61 e-Letters

published between 2013 and 2016

  • An analysis of limitations of tax policy is not a policy fix
    Stephen L Hamann

    It is important for tobacco control policymakers to know the advantages and disadvantages of different tax policies. It is quite another thing to move a tax system to optimize tax policy for tobacco control since there are multiple obstacles to systems change. In addition, health advocates often do not invest enough time and effort to understanding the economics of tax systems and the structural impediments in existing l...

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  • Re:KPMG response to 'Towards a greater understanding of illicit tobacco trade in Europe: a review of the PMI funded 'Project Star' report', published in Tobacco Control (BMJ) on 11th December 2013
    Anna B Gilmore

    Dear Editor

    Cartwright (1) has clearly mis-read our article on PMI's Project Star report(2). The central premise of our article is not that illicit is overestimated but that the Project Star report cannot be relied on as a source of data on illicit until there is significantly greater transparency over the underlying methodology and data inputs and the contractual arrangements under which it is conducted. KPMG i...

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  • KPMG response to 'Towards a greater understanding of illicit tobacco trade in Europe: a review of the PMI funded 'Project Star' report', published in Tobacco Control (BMJ) on 11th December 2013
    Robin M. Cartwright

    Significant factual inaccuracies relating to KPMG's annual report into the European trade in illicit tobacco were made in a recent article published in Tobacco Control by the BMJ. The report, which KPMG's Strategy Group has been producing since 2005, is recognised by the UK National Audit Office, OLAF and the OECD (and by other numerous national customs authorities and government departments) as the most comprehensive...

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  • Cultural considerations for tobacco control strategies in rural China
    Diana M. Sheehan

    NOT PEER REVIEWED Dear Editor,

    The recent article by Cai et al, reported that male gender, young age, low educational attainment, and tobacco cultivation are predictors of tobacco use and second-hand smoke (SHS) exposure in rural China [1]. Neighborhood-level income was the only contextual predictor of tobacco use and SHS exposure identified. Hence, the authors suggested that "future interventions to reduce smo...

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    Mohamed F. Allam

    NOT PEER REVIEWED To the Editor: The habit of water pipe smoking is rapidly extending in all occidental countries. This rise in popularity appears to be correlated with the advent on store shelves of an array of fruit-flavored tobacco mixtures, which list ''molasses'' as a primary ingredient. Also there is a widespread misperception among smokers that the water through which the smoke bubbles acts as a filter, rendering...

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  • Taking Breaks: are smokers examples of model employees?
    Ivan L. Gee
    NOT PEER REVIEWED The article by Berman et al "Estimating the cost of a smoking employee" has attempted to quantify the costs associated with employing smokers. As the article indicates several companies are now actively discriminating against smokers so it is important that any costs are fully justified. One area that concerns me about this is a tendency towards oversimplification of a complex situation. In particular the assu...
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  • Re:Measuring mass media coverage of tobacco: prominence over quantity
    David E. Nelson

    We appreciate Dr. Blum's interest in our study and his comments. Data used for our study were collected and coded based on the public health surveillance model, which is more fully described elsewhere (1). Only a carefully selected set of items from tobacco news stories were coded over an extended period of time, with editorial cartoons and letters to the editor not included in the system. The newspapers were specific...

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  • Measuring mass media coverage of tobacco: prominence over quantity
    Alan Blum

    NOT PEER REVIEWED Because the authors cite just seven major tobacco-related news events in the seven year period they reviewed (Figure 2), I question whether their tabulation of the "volume of news media stories on tobacco" (page 6) provides a meaningful representation of the coverage of tobacco-related issues in the mass media. Is not a front-page article on a tobacco- related subject in The New York Times or The Washingt...

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  • Re:Re:Large-scale unassisted smoking cessation over 50 years: lessons from history for endgame planning in tobacco control
    James A McLennan

    NOT PEER REVIEWED I really welcome this kind of discussion.

    I acknowledge your 'why and how' argument, however you may find that things like telephone counselling and many group programs will however then fall into your unassisted quitting category as well. This is because they are simply being coached to enhance those natural skills they already have.

    I am aware you are conducting an interview style...

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  • start a broader movement targeted at WTO
    Manfred A. Neuberger

    NOT PEER REVIEWED The warning of this article is important, but not limited to the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Switzerland and USA, as countries which have not ratified, are not obliged to follow Article 5.3 of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. One of the reasons for the largest tobacco companies to move their headquarters to Switzerland was the location of the World Trade Organisation in this country. Some...

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