IMA, DMC and HCFI appeal to the medical fraternity to actively prescribe staying away from active and passive smoking to all their patients
New Delhi, May 30, 2016: According to the World Health Organization, tobacco consumption is the second leading cause of death and fourth leading cause of diseases worldwide. As per the recently released Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS-India 2010), about 35 per cent of the adults in India consume tobacco in some form or the other.
“Tobacco use can trigger an onset of life-threatning non-communicable diseases (NCDs) like ischemic heart diseases, cancers, diabetes, chronic respiratory diseases and its increasing incidence must be curbed. The Delhi Medical Council, Heart Care Foundation of India & Indian Medical Association have jointly sent out a communication to members of the medical fraternity requesting them to actively prescribe refraining the use of all tobacco products as well as to stay away from smoke filled environments to each and every patient”, said Dr Arun Gupta – President DMC and Padma Shri Awardee Dr KK Aggarwal – President HCFI and Honorary Secretary General IMA.
IMA and HCFI have also written to the Health and Finance Ministry to consider treatment of tobacco de-addiction under the list of income tax exemptions. They also want them to consider giving concessions to non-smokers Mediclaim premium and include smoking de-addiction in the Mediclaim policy.
They have also appealed to the Chief Minister and Health Minister of Delhi to tweet on World No tobacco day asking general public to exercise their rights and ask smokers not to smoke in front of them.
Recently we had also sent an appeal to Honorable Health Minister of Delhi, Shri Satyendar Jain requesting him to declare May 31st as a dry tobacco day in the city. They had recommended a complete ban on the sale of all tobacco products including cigarettes, gutka, hookah and e-cigarettes for a period of 24 hours, said Dr Girish Tyagi Registrar DMC.
World No Tobacco Day is observed across the globe on May 31st every year. It is aimed at encouraging people to abstain from consuming tobacco for 24 hours and raising awareness about the hazardous effects of tobacco consumption on a person’s health and well-being. Tobacco use is responsible for nearly 6 million deaths each year worldwide, 600,000 of which are the result of non-smokers being exposed to second-hand smoke.
IMA & HCFI also released the following policies
1. All IMA meetings to be tobacco free
2. Charity begins at home - Doctors should not smoke or consume tobacco
3. While writing a prescription, a doctor should write 'No Passive smoking' before the prescribed drugs column
4. Tobacco consumption is a disease and has to be treated by doctors
5. Tobacco de-addiction should be covered by CGHS, PSUs, Mediclaim
6. Income Tax exemption should be given to de-addiction treatment
7. In Mediclaim, insurance premium should be lower for non smokers and should be reduced for those who quit smoking
8. IMA meetings should be e-tobacco free
9. All IMA meetings should also be hookah free