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Chilean news media coverage of proposed regulations on tobacco use in national entertainment media, May 2011–February 2013
  1. Rahoul V Ahuja1,
  2. Christy L Kollath-Cattano2,
  3. Maria Teresa Valenzuela3,
  4. James F Thrasher2,4
  1. 1Medical University of South Carolina, College of Medicine, Charleston, South Carolina, USA
  2. 2Department of Health Promotion, Education and Behavior, Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina, USA
  3. 3Department of Health Promotion, School of Public Health, University of Chile, Santiago, Chile
  4. 4Department of Tobacco Research, National Institute of Public Health, Cuernavaca, South Carolina, USA
  1. Correspondence to Rahoul V Ahuja, rahoulahuja{at}gmail.com

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Across the Americas, Chile has the highest prevalence of adult and youth smoking (40.6% and 39.2%, respectively).1 ,2 The WHO's Framework Convention on Tobacco Control recommends prohibiting direct and indirect tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship (TAPS), including portrayals of tobacco in films.3 The tobacco industry has long used films to promote its products.3 ,4 Evidence from numerous countries consistently demonstrates that exposure to tobacco use in films promotes youth smoking, which provides the rationale for policy development in this area.3 ,4

In May 2011, Chile introduced legislation to ban smoking in enclosed public spaces. From May 2011 to January 2013, Chilean lawmakers discussed amending this legislation to include a ban of all forms of indirect TAPS. The tobacco and entertainment industries lobbied against this legislation, and the TAPS provisions were weakened when they passed in January 2013. Only partial TAPS restrictions were adopted, which included prohibition of paid tobacco product placement.

The media can influence policy decisions.5 Prior studies have examined how media represent tobacco control policies, particularly smoke-free policies6 …

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