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More smokers in Rajasthan than national average, but overall tobacco use has declined: Survey

The number of smokers in Rajasthan is more than the national average, but the overall tobacco use by adults has declined in the state over the past more than five years, revealed Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS 2) 2016-17.

jaipur Updated: Dec 11, 2017 21:19 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Rajasthan,More smokers,Tobacco use
Rajasthan health minister Kali Charan Saraf, economic adviser to the ministry of health and family welfare Arun Kumar Jha, principal secretary, health, Veenu Gupta, health secretary and National Health Mission chief Naveen Jain, and World Health Organisation’s Vineet Munish Gil released in Jaipur on Monday data on Rajasthan found in Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS 2) 2016-17. (HT Photo)

The number of smokers in Rajasthan is more than the national average, but the overall tobacco use by adults has declined in the state over the past more than five years, revealed Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS 2) 2016-17.

The survey covered 74,037 individuals across India, and 1499 males and 1534 females in Rajasthan.

The data revealed that India has 10.7% smokers, but Rajasthan has 13.2%. Overall tobacco users in India account for 28.6%, but in Rajasthan it is 24.7%; smokeless tobacco users are 21.4% in India and 14.1% in the state, and dual users (using both smoke and smokeless tobacco) are 3.4% in India and 2.6% in Rajasthan.

Health minister Kali Charan Saraf, economic adviser to the ministry of health and family welfare Arun Kumar Jha, principal secretary, health, Veenu Gupta, health secretary and National Health Mission chief Naveen Jain, and World Health Organisation’s Vineet Munish Gil released the results of the Rajasthan survey on Monday.

The survey revealed that the prevalence of overall tobacco use has come down significantly among adults in Rajasthan – from 32.3% in 2009-10 (GATS 1) to 24.7% (GATS 2) in 2016-17. Smoking has decreased by 5.6% among adults from 18.8% to 13.2% during the period. Smokeless tobacco use has decreased by 4.8% (from 18.9 to 14.1%).

Bidi and gutka are the most commonly used tobacco products in the state -- 11.4% of the adults smoke bidi and 9.0% take gutka, the data showed.

The prevalence of tobacco use among people aged 15-17 years has decreased from 10.5% in GATS 1 to 7.1% in GATS 2. The mean age for initiation of tobacco use has increased from 17 years in GATS 1 to 18.4 years in GATS 2. This means that children start tobacco use at a later age than earlier.

GATS 2 data revealed that the number of current tobacco users who want to quit is 44.8% smokers and 48.5% chewers in Rajasthan; in GATS-1, this number was more -- 54.6% smokers and 57.4% chewers.

Health care providers in the state advised 53% smokers and 37.5% chewers to quit; during the previous survey, the figures were 39.7% and 57.4%. The findings underline the need to increase support and expand cessation services, especially for smokeless tobacco users, which will help them quit tobacco use.

Large pack warnings have motivated tobacco users -- especially bidi smokers and smokeless tobacco users -- to consider quitting, the study said.

GATS was conducted under the stewardship of the union ministry of health & family welfare (MoH&FW) with technical assistance from WHO, Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, and Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai.

First Published: Dec 11, 2017 21:18 IST