IHHN commemorates World No Tobacco Day

KARACHI   -   Voices Against Tobacco (VAT), an initiative of Indus Hospital & Health Network (IHHN), recognised World No Tobacco Day, in a panel discussion covering various impacts of tobacco on Pakistan’s communities, held at Indus Hospital and Health Network recently.

The session discussed the current status of tobacco use in Pakistan, what policies should be in place to curb prevalence of tobacco, how tobacco use continues to harm our environment, and perspectives from the community. Notable guests included Dr Sohail Akhtar, Professor & Senior Consultant, Pulmonology, IHHN, Dr. Muhammad Suleman Otho, Afia Salam, Rehman Khanzada. Also in attendance were Dr. Saima Saeed, who moderated the event, IHHN CEO Dr. Abdul Bari Khan and Dr. Zafar Zaidi, Dean of Indus University of Health Sciences and Senior Executive Director, IHHN. According to a Global Youth Tobacco Survey, about 1,200 children in Pakistan between the age of 6 – 15 years start smoking every day. Not only are cigarettes cheap and easily accessible in Pakistan, but with the advent of novel products such as e-cigarettes, tobacco in various forms has become even more accessible and desirable for young people. In fact, recent data shows that while global smoking rates among adults have fallen, the rate of young smokers continues to rise.

“There is a clear, persistent use of tobacco products in Pakistan due to a lack of understanding of the extent of tobacco hazards to our health and environment,” said Dr. Zafar Zaidi, Director of Indus University. “We need to abolish misconceptions about tobacco products to curb and break the cycle of tobacco use and providing easily comprehendible data and facts to our youth is necessary.”

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