Dual voice on tobacco control in Poland. Inequalities, urgent needs, new challenges
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National Research Institute of Oncology, Warsaw, Poland
Calisia University, Kalisz, Poland
Publication date: 2023-10-08
Corresponding author
Krzysztof Przewoźniak   

National Research Institute of Oncology, Warsaw, Poland
Tob. Prev. Cessation 2023;9(Supplement 2):A117
Enforcement of the comprehensive tobacco control policies in Poland in mid-1990s contributed to substantial decrease in tobacco smoking and lung cancer mortality. However, there are still gaps, social inequalities, urgent needs and new challenges in tobacco control to be addressed and solved.

To identify and evaluate current inequalities, urgent needs and new challenges in tobacco control in Poland.

Material and Methods:
1/ Analysis of cigarette sale in Poland (1923-2022); 2/ Results of nation-wide surveys conducted in youth and adult population in Poland (1974-2019); 3/ Values of tobacco excise taxes and cigarette prices in Poland (2000-2019); 4/ Scores of Tobacco Control Scale (TCS) for Poland and selected countries (2003-2021).

Analyses show that production of cigarettes in Poland (and its value) has constantly increased since 2002 to almost 150-160 billions cigarettes a year but most of cigarettes are now exported. After long-time decline, cigarette sale currently again grows. It is mainly caused by substantial decrease in real tobacco taxes and prices, gaps in other comprehensive tobacco control measures, programs and services, over two times increase in cigarette smoking among women living in rural area and dramatic increase in the use of e-cigarettes (ENDS) by teenagers and young adults. GYTS data indicates that current ENDS use in Poland is the highest one in Europe both among boys and girls. Gender differences in cigarettes smoking among adults and teenagers tend to substantially decrease in Poland. By now, education and household income are key predictors for tobacco use. Comparison of TCS scores shows that Poland is year by year at lower position on TCS ranking list.

Tobacco control in Poland needs in particular to 1/ have effectively enforced long-term comprehensive strategy and action plan for tobacco endgame, 2/ close major gaps in enforcing tobacco control measures (i.e. introduce complete smoking ban in public places, plain packaging, tobacco advertising and promotion ban in points of sale), 3/ raise tobacco taxes and prices over inflation rate, 4/ raise funds for tobacco control research, programs and smoking cessation services according with present and future needs, 5/ create comprehensive system for monitoring and evaluation of tobacco use, its health, social and economic consequences, and effectiveness of tobacco control program and policies, with special focus on new emerging tobacco and nicotine products.

The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.
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