Currently the country has 56 tobacco cessation clinics

Reyna Roa, coordinator and focal point for tobacco control of the Ministry of Health (Minsa) reiterated the warning to the population about the risks that the consumption of tobacco products represents for human health and at the same time pointed out that they threaten the environment ambient.

Roa’s call is made on the occasion of “World No Tobacco Day” which is celebrated on May 31, under the motto: “Protecting the environment, one more reason to quit smoking.”

“This message is important because in the framework agreement for tobacco control of the WHO it refers in articles 17 and 18 to the health of people and also to environmental health, in fact, tobacco from the cultivation process it is capable of generating damage to the environment because to cultivate it you have to deforest”, said Dr. Reyna Roa.

He specified that worldwide about 10 billion cigarettes are discarded per year, which implies environmental pollution. He added that it be identified that around 40% of urban and coastal waste belongs to cigarette butts.

56 Tobacco cessation clinics in Panama

Roa mentioned that among the strategies that have been implemented in Panama over the years to combat tobacco use are the cessation clinics, which reach a total of 56.

He argued that the fundamental objective of these clinics is to offer therapies, free of charge, with medications and psychotherapies based on the needs that the patient may have.

Impact of tobacco use

He stressed that in addition to impacting environmental health, more than 7 million people die in the world because of this product every year.

He indicated that 54% of chronic non-communicable diseases are associated or attributable to tobacco, such as diabetes, hypertension, cancer, among others.

Prevalence in Panama

It concluded that the prevalence of tobacco consumption in Panama reaches between, children between 13 and 15 years with 7% and in those over 15 years with 5%.

PAHO perspective

From the perspective of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), tobacco not only harms those who smoke it or the passive smoker, but also affects it in a much broader way. It also reiterates that the harmful impact of the tobacco industry on the environment environment is huge and growing, adding unnecessary pressure on already scarce resources and fragile ecosystems.

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