Danish national plan against youth smoking
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Danish Health Authority, Denmark Ministry of Health, Copenhagen, Denmark
Danish Cancer Society, Copenhagen, Denmark
Publication date: 2022-07-05
Tob. Prev. Cessation 2022;8(Supplement):A71
Denmark ranked 29th out of 36 European countries in the 2019 Tobacco Control Scale and the smoking prevalence in Denmark is much higher than in the other Nordic countries. From 2013 to 2017, smoking increased in age groups below 35 years, which initiated public and political awareness.

The aim was to curb the alarming development in Denmark, as youth smoking was rising and tobacco control had come to a halt.

A broad partnership between private and public organizations to fight smoking was established. Together with WHO and ENSP, we made a capacity assessment on the implementation of effective tobacco control policies in Denmark, which gave key recommendations. The main communication theme of the partnership was protection of children.

The Smoke-Free Future partnership had 275 partners by the end of 2021. ‘National Action Plan against Children and Youth Smoking’ was agreed upon by a majority of the political parties in 2019 and will be fully implemented in 2022. The plan includes, for example: higher prices of tobacco, smoke-free school-hours, point-of-sales display ban, advertising ban, and plain packaging. About 70 percent of the populations support the elements in the action plan. The sales of cigarettes in Denmark fell by 18% in 2020, and the smoking prevalence in the age group 15–29 years fell to 20%. Negotiations about an Action Plan 2.0 is underway in Denmark.

The approach with a broad partnership, WHO based recommendations, and a communication strategy with focus on children, has been effective in creating public and political support to act on tobacco control.

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