HPB to Introduce Anti-Tobacco Education in Schools

The Health Promotion Board (HPB) in Singapore has decided to implement new initiatives with a goal to reduce the adult smoking population in the country to 12% by 2020.

HPB to introduce anti-tobacco education in schools

By the year 2017, Singapore is planning to introduce a novel anti-tobacco educational programme in all its mainstream schools. Besides this, the smoking cessation touch points will also be increased from 150 to 600 by the year 2020.

What Are Touch points?

Touch points are the retail pharmacies or healthcare institutes where any smoker looking forward to quit smoking will get clinical recommendations, advice and counseling on getting rid of smoking habits.

Strategies to Fight Smoking

HPB developed two main strategies to fight smoking in the country. Where anti-tobacco educational initiatives in schools will spread awareness amongst young children and restrain them from smoking, easy access to cessation programmes against smoking will help the smokers to get rid of their smoking habits.

Current Trends

According to the recent findings of National Health Surveillance Survey 2013 – the long term efforts to reduce diseases caused by smoking have started to show some results.

  • The rate of prevalence of adult smoking has been stabilized at surprising 13.3 percent in the year 2013. The statistics for the same were recorded around 13.6 percent in 2007.
  • Next, the report also revealed a significant drop in prevalence of smoking population between the age groups from 18 to 29 years, from a soaring 17.2 percent in the year 2007 to 13.7 percent in 2013.

According to HPB, this decrease in smoking population is a highly encouraging indicator that the long-term efforts taken by HPB to prevent the initiation of smoking and encouraging youth to refrain from smoking activities have finally started to yield results.

Other Initiatives

In addition to the above mentioned initiatives, HPB will also leverage school based mental well-being programmes in order to promote positive self-esteem and resilience amongst students and youth.

This is an initiative by HPB to help the youth develop self-awareness and ability to say no to other social issues and influences which encourage the use of tobacco.

“I Quit” by The Health Promotion Board

To mark the celebration of World NoTobacco Day, HPB also launched its annual National Tobacco Control Campaign under the name of “I Quit”.

This year, HPB aims to target about 10,000 smokers to come up and take the pledge of quitting the habit of smoking and moving towards the beginning of a new journey, by signing up for the – “I Quit 28-Day Countdown”.

As an attempt to encourage more and more smokers to take up the challenge, the campaign is expected to expand its outreach and support network by increasing the number of its road shows.