The newspaper of Imperial College London
 Issue 139, 31 March 2004
£76m centre for clinical imaging«
Tribute to miracle miler Sir Roger«
Harriet’s prime howler!«
International student awards«
Making a grand entrance«
Lowering blood pressure«
It’s a bug’s life«
Will powers IC Trust«
We’re on the map«
Britain the ‘tobacco control time-warp’«
Cutting carbon emissions«
When too much competition can prove unhelpful…«
Emotional intelligence scrutinised«
Move to new headquarters«
Staff Pay and Grading update«
An international night to remember«
Water way to make a splash at College…«
Science soirée at Silwood«
Snap happy…«
In Brief«
Media Spotlight«
What’s on«

Britain the ‘tobacco control time-warp’

THE British government is not doing enough to stop people smoking claims a report published in the Medical Journal of Australia which severely criticises the government's record on tobacco control.

Currently, one Briton dies every five minutes from tobacco-related diseases.

While Australia passed the point where ex-smokers outnumbered smokers in 1989, Britain has still not passed this important public health landmark, meaning that coming to Britain is like entering a ‘tobacco control time-warp’, claim the authors.

With nearly a third of British adults still smoking, compared with a figure of 20 per cent in Australia, tobacco is destined to kill millions more in this country, despite the dangers of smoking having been discovered in Britain more than 50 years ago, they add.

One of the authors, Imperial’s professor Konrad Jamrozik, from Australia, joined the College in 2001, as professor of primary care epidemiology.

He was heavily involved with campaigning for stricter tobacco control measures and went head to head with former Australian Prime Minister, John Howard, in a radio interview about inadequate funding for anti-smoking campaigns.

“It is extremely hard to fathom why a nation that has led the world in documenting the harm done by smoking, has been so slow to act on the evidence and adopt a comprehensive programme of tobacco control,” he explained.

“International experience shows that adoption of smoke-free policies in public places and workplaces stimulates many smokers to give up the habit.

“When introduced with adequate explanation and advance notice, smoke-free policies are well respected, and several studies have now shown that they have no adverse economic impact on the hospitality industry.”

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