Table 2

Tobacco control policies in Ireland

TaxationPrice increased by more than 10% in 2000, 2003 and 2007–2008, each increase in price corresponded to increases in excise tax. In 2008, 60% of price was tax (43% specific, 17% ad valorem).14 In 2010, taxes were raised to 63% (43.2% specific, 18.2% ad valorem).15
Smoke-free placesIreland had a partial workplace ban, no restaurant and bar ban but a ban in public places in 1998. In 2004, a complete ban was introduced on smoking in workplaces and public places including restaurants and bars, with minimal exemptions.16 Enforcement was set to 5 in 1998, increasing to 6 in 2004 and increasing in steps to 9 in 2007.
Tobacco control campaignsIreland had a low-level campaign in 1998, increasing to a medium level in 2000, then reduced and maintained at a low level from 2005 to 2010. Ireland was considered to have a national campaign with defined goals and spending between $0.25 and $0.50 per capita since 2006.1
Advertising, promotion and sponsorshipSince 1979, most forms of advertising were banned (TV, radio) or restricted (newspapers, billboards), except print advertising (level 2.0). Legislation in 2000 extended the advertising ban to include print media and some forms of sponsorship (level 3.0). Legislation enacted in 2002 banned some forms of indirect marketing, such as mail giveaways, promotional discounts and sponsored events (level 3.25). In 2004, the ban was extended to all forms of indirect advertising (level 3.5). However, some forms of sponsorship, brand stretching and product placements have been allowed. Level of enforcement is 10.17
Health warningsIreland had weak health warnings prior to 2002. Since 2002, Ireland has had rotating health warnings covering 30% and 40% of the front and rear main surfaces of the package in accordance with EU Directives. In 2008, warning size increased to 32% and 45% with introduction of Irish and English language warnings. Warnings are not graphic or pictorial. Health warnings were at a low level in 1998, increasing to a moderate level from 2002 to 2010.
Smoking cessation treatmentCessation services were minimal in 1998. Pharmacotherapy is available in pharmacies. Nicotine replacement therapy is available over the counter for a fee to everyone or on prescription for free to medical cardholders. Varenicline or Bupriopion are available on prescription. An active quitline has been available since 2003 with limited publicity and outreach. Partial cessation treatment coverage was assigned since 2001 and low levels of brief interventions were assigned for all years.18
Youth accessIreland has had a ban on sales of tobacco to youth under 18 years since 2002, but it was not implemented until 2007. Youth access restrictions were categorised as at a low level since 2007.