Round table on tobacco consumption in Ukraine: reduction in smoking achieved
On 14 February 2018 the Ministry of Health of Ukraine, the WHO Country Office in Ukraine, Kiev International Institute of Sociology and the National Academy of Medical Sciences of Ukraine held a round table discussion on the second Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) conducted in Ukraine in 2017 with support from WHO/Europe.
Good results but additional progress requires collaboration across sectors
The results of GATS 2017 demonstrate good progress in Ukraine.
- Smoking prevalence has decreased by 20% (relative reduction).
- The proportion of people who are exposed to tobacco smoke at home, in work and in public places has decreased.
- Cigarette prices have increased, encouraging smokers to quit and non-smokers to not start smoking.
However, a lot of work remains to be done, and Ukraine has a long way to go to fully meet its commitment to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. Achieving the aspirations for the health and well-being of the people of Ukraine will require collaborative work between all sectors of government, politicians, businesses, experts, researchers and civil society.
The implications of the survey, for tobacco control and related policies, was discussed with experts from professional bodies, academia and medical facilities. Dr. Marthe Everard, WHO Representative and Head of the Country Office in Ukraine, stressed that repeating GATS in 2017 had allowed Ukraine to measure progress in tobacco control since the 2010 survey, identify priorities in continuing to strengthen tobacco control, and raise a number of important research questions. It is essential for the health of the people of Ukraine that tobacco use and control is continually monitored, effective interventions are implemented and researched, and that ongoing efforts are targeted to those groups of people most in need and in ways that can most effectively benefit the population.
Key results of the survey were published and presented as an executive summary in September 2017, and are already being used to inform better tobacco control in Ukraine.