In 2007 ,Five million people died in the world as a direct result of tobacco.
In 20th Century, tobacco epidemic killed 100 million people world-wide.
About 100,000 people die annually due to tobacco use.
Tobacco use is a risk factor for six out of eight leading causes of death in the world.
Tobacco Control Cell, Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination, Pakistan
The Government of Pakistan signed the Framework Convention of Tobacco Control (FCTC) in May, 2004 and ratified it in the same year. FCTC is the first international treaty to provide a framework (and attendant obligations) for tobacco regulations. Under Article 5.2 of the FCTC, the Parties to the said treaty are mandated to put in place proper and effective national coordination mechanism for multi-sectoral coordination of tobacco control efforts.
In order to fulfill obligations under Article 5.2 of FCTC, Tobacco Control Cell was created in Ministry of Health (Defunct) on 1st July, 2007 under the Director General (Implementation), as a part of non-development budget. The objective of Tobacco Control Cell is to reduce prevalence of tobacco use in Pakistan by taking administrative, legislative and coordination measures for implementation of FCTC Articles. Currently, the Cell has been placed under Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination (Mo NHSR&C). Tobacco Control Cell is also mandated to achieve the target set in Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) i.e. SDG 3 (a): Strengthen the implementation of the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.
Functions of Tobacco Control Cell: The aim of Tobacco Control Cell is to reduce prevalence of tobacco use in Pakistan. Major functions of the Cell are as under:
Taking administrative, legislative and coordination measures for implementation of FCTC Articles.
Coordination with provincial and district governments to ensure enforcement of tobacco control laws.
Enhance capacity of provincial and district government in developing and implementing tobacco control plans.
Forging partnerships with other National Health programmes within the Ministry of NHSRC to mainstream tobacco related activities.
Regular conducting of awareness / advocacy workshops for both the general public and selected target audience.
Regular interaction with media, providing them with regularly updated scientific information on tobacco-related issues.
Establishing inter-sectoral, inter-provincial, inter-district partnerships.
Vital linkages with Private Sector, academia, NGOs.
Dissemination of information on tobacco control on National and International forums.
Provision of technical support to other ministries on pertinent tobacco – related issues based on research and scientific studies.
Provision of technical support and information on tobacco –related issues to legislators.
Training workshops for health care professionals and other stakeholders.
Technical support and trainings for local governments, Individuals and institutions, non-governmental and governmental organizations.
Coordination of tobacco control initiative with donors and development partners
Liaison with universities and research institutions in the development and conducting of tobacco related issues.
Preparation and issuance of technical guidelines to stakeholder’s i.e. technical guidelines for cessation.
Fund generation for the Cell.