As part of the Canadian Medical Association’s (CMA’s) ongoing work to reduce tobacco use, the association is supporting World No Tobacco Day on May 31 by helping launch the 2019 Tobacco Endgame Report.
The report calls for governments across Canada to take action to reach an “endgame” goal: lowering tobacco use to less than 5% by 2035. The current smoking rate in Canada is 16% (2017).
“The CMA was the first to raise concerns on the usage of tobacco in 1954. Today, we’re continuing this work to reduce tobacco use, particularly the growing use of e-cigarettes and vaping among young people. Our health depends on it.” – Dr. Gigi Osler, CMA president
The CMA is a member of the Endgame Cabinet, joining the Canadian Lung Association, the Canadian Cancer Society and other health charities and experts in authoring this report.
The report highlights the inadequacy of current measures in ending tobacco use, and outlines the need for higher tobacco taxes, more investment in tobacco control and cessation programs, as well as stronger measures to curb the dramatic increase in youth vaping.
This focus on e-cigarettes and vaping compliments the CMA’s recent submissions to Health Canada calling for vaping to be banned in public spaces, for regulations preventing marketing to youth, and for health warnings to be placed on all vaping products.
“Flashy colours and flavours make these products all too appealing for younger audiences,” explains Dr. Osler. “The government needs to move quickly to restrict their marketing and reverse this trend to ensure the health of Canadians is not affected for generations to come.”
World No Tobacco Day is an annual initiative by the World Health Organization to highlight tobacco’s impacts on people’s health. The 2019 campaign is focusing on lung health, from cancer to chronic respiratory disease.