Monday July 22, 2024

PROTECTING FUTURE GENERATIONS: Major tobacco control initiative unveiled

By Our Correspondent
June 09, 2024
Participants pose for a group photo at “Tobacco Control Awareness Camp” in Islamabad on June 6, 2024. — Facebook/The Centaurus Mall
Participants pose for a group photo at “Tobacco Control Awareness Camp” in Islamabad on June 6, 2024. — Facebook/The Centaurus Mall

Islamabad: Dr. Akbar Niazi Teaching Hospital (ANTH), in collaboration with the ICT Administration and the Tobacco Control Cell of the Federal Health Ministry, hosted a “Tobacco Control Awareness Camp” at Centaurus Mall, Islamabad. This event, part of the World No Tobacco Week activities, aimed to raise awareness about the harms of tobacco use and featured the theme ‘Protecting Children from Tobacco Industry Interference’, says a press release.

A team of physicians, psychologists, psychiatrists, and other medical staff from ANTH provided free consultations and screening facilities. The event attracted a large number of attendees who benefitted from the services offered. Key figures attending the event included Additional Deputy Commissioner (East) Usman Ashraf, who also serves as the focal person for Tobacco Control, ANTH Director Dr Areej Neyazi, President Centaurus Mall Dr Sardar Rashid Ilyas, Project Manager Muhammad Aftab Ahmad.

Addressing the audience, ADC Usman Ashraf urged everyone to contribute to discouraging tobacco use in society. He commended the efforts of ANTH, TCC, Centaurus and other collaborators for organizing the event.

Islamabad Administration and Health Ministry officials emphasized the critical importance of raising awareness to control tobacco use. They highlighted the ministry’s commitment to making Islamabad a smoke-free city and expressed gratitude to ANTH and Centaurus management for their support.

Imran Ali Ghouri, Head of ANTH Communications, provided statistics from the 2014 Global Adult Tobacco Survey, revealing that approximately 24 million Pakistani adults use tobacco in various forms, resulting in over 160,000 deaths annually. He reaffirmed the hospital’s commitment to supporting the health ministry and ICT Administration in keeping public areas, hospitals, educational institutions, and public transport free from tobacco smoke. Muhammad Aftab pointed out the rising trend of tobacco use among young people and women over the past few decades. Dr Areej stressed the importance of the Tobacco Smoke Free Capital initiative to protect Pakistanis from deadly diseases such as cancer and cardiac issues. ADC, health ministry officials, and ANTH management vowed to continue collaborating on public awareness events to achieve a tobacco smoke-free generation in Islamabad.