Business Standard

IMA chapter hails move on having quitline on tobacco packs


Press Trust of India Thiruvananthapuram
The Kerala chapter of the Indian Medical Association (IMA) has welcomed the Centre's decision to include the quitline number on all tobacco products and cigarette packs from September 1 this year.
"Including the quitline number on all tobacco product packs will increase its familiarity with both users and non-users, leading to more number of users coming forward to quit voluntarily," IMA Kerala Chapter state president Dr E K Ummer said.
The centre had earlier this month issued a notification that all tobacco products and cigarette packs will have a national toll-free quitline number printed on them to assist users quit addiction, besides warnings, including enhanced pictorial images and text messages, covering 85 per cent of the packet area.
On the new set of pictorial warnings to be used on packs, Ummer said, "as a doctor, it pains me to see these visuals. It will sure act as a deterrent to smokers and tobacco users."

Dr K R Thankappan, Emeritus Professor, Achutha Menon Centre for Health Science Studies, also welcomed the move.
"Tobacco cessation rates in India are as low as 2-3 per cent. While this tells us about the extremely addictive nature of tobacco products, it is also a pointer to inadequate cessation services," he said.

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First Published: Apr 30 2018 | 7:55 PM IST

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