Tobacco Control Update – Issue 277

Philip Pattemore is an associate professor of paediatrics at Otago University, and wrote this editorial on behalf of Doctors for Healthy Trade.

Most of us are familiar with the cost to personal health from smoking tobacco, and from passive exposure of children and others who have no choice about smoking. Tobacco is the largest preventable cause of mortality worldwide – every year six million people (more than the population of New Zealand) die from smoking, and another 600,000 die from passive exposure to tobacco smoke. Globally, 50 percent of children are exposed (UN estimates).

That’s why the majority of people, including smokers in this country, want stronger regulation and more taxes. New Zealand doctors and nurses are therefore deeply concerned about the protections and rights given to tobacco corporations by the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement.

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