EDITORIAL| Yosi Kadiri!

LAST Monday, Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial told reporters in Manila that she is considering the advisory of the World Health Organization (WHO) to ban electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes)

in all designated indoor smoke-free areas.

In the city, our anti-smoking ordinance is one of the landmark legislations that has been faithfully implemented and replicated in other cities across the country. There may be no figures yet as to its impact on the smoking habits of the residents but certainly, it has made our air cleaner, better and has contributed to a healthier environment, overall.

Since the Philippines has become a Party to the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control on September 2005, it is expected to seriously implement Republic Act 9211 or the Tobacco Regulation Act which was passed in 2003 under the Arroyo administration. The law regulates smoking in public places, tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship, and sales restrictions, among other requirements. Other memos and guidelines have also been passed by different government agencies to support the law. With Secretary Ubial at the helm, we expect this law to be implemented in all cities and towns in the country.

The bottomline Is for people to quit the habit, be healthy and therefore, be more productive, The top three killer diseases in our country are lifestyle diseases which could be prevented by changing our diet, getting proper exercise and rest. Smoking, including the use of E-cigarettes and vapes, is hazardous and many doctors say that these should not be an alternative to cigarettes or used as a bridge to those who plan on quitting.

The sad thing is that most of those who were affected by diseases caused by smoking were second-hand smokers. Smoking, whether tobacco or e-cig, is a personal choice and the government cannot totally eradicate it. Education on the evils of smoking, especially to the younger set, must be a priority in this campaign. The “Yosi Kadiri” slogan of the late senator and health secretary Juan Flavier is still relevant to this day.

Posted in Opinion