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Current situation and future challenges of tobacco control policy in Thailand
  1. Rassamee Sangthong1,
  2. Wit Wichaidit1,
  3. Chittawet Ketchoo1,2
  1. 1Epidemiology Unit, Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkla University, Hat Yai, Songkhla, Thailand
  2. 2Ban Danlod Health Center, Tamod District Health Office, Phatthalung Province, Thailand
  1. Correspondence to Dr Rassamee Sangthong, Epidemiology Unit, Faculty of Medicine, Prince of Songkla University, Hat Yai, Songkhla, 90110 Thailand; rassamee_sangthong{at}yahoo.com

Abstract

In Thailand, the prevalence of smoking has steadily declined over the past 20 years, suggesting an effective tobacco control policy. However, the prevalence has recently stabilised and youth smoking now appears to be on the rise. Tobacco use is the third highest risk factor contributing to the burden of disease in the country. This is an issue of concern and led to the present review of tobacco control measures in Thailand.

The present evidence-based review shows that Thailand's tobacco control measures are relatively strong and comply well with the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control in terms of taxation, advertisement through popular media, and warning labels on cigarettes and other tobacco product packages. However, challenges remain in dealing with highly prevalent roll-your-own cigarettes, strict prohibition of tobacco sale to underage youths, household smoking, illicit trade of tobacco products, viable tobacco crop diversification for domestic tobacco growers and liability. If these challenges are met, the prevalence of tobacco consumption could possibly be further reduced.

  • Tobacco control
  • WHO FCTC
  • policy
  • thailand
  • environmental tobacco smoke
  • hand-rolled/RYO cigarettes
  • packaging and labelling
  • public policy
  • taxation and price

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Footnotes

  • Funding The review is part of the Epidemiological Study of Tobacco Control Policy Project supported by the Tobacco Control Research and Knowledge Management Center (TRC).

  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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