Centre to put toll-free 'Quitline' number on tobacco packets

Dec 04, 2017, 08:25 IST | Agencies

It would be a dedicated toll-free number to help tobacco users receive free support and guidance to subdue their addiction

The Centre is working on issuing a new set of enhanced pictorial and text warnings and planning to print the national toll-free helpline number on the packets of all tobacco products to amplify the message. The National Tobacco Cessation QuitLine –1800 227787 – is a dedicated toll-free number that helps tobacco users to receive free support and guidance to subdue their addiction.

Representational Image
Representational Image

In September 2015, the Union Health Ministry had made it mandatory for manufacturers to display health warnings on 85 per cent of the main display area on the packets of all tobacco products from April 1, 2016. The ministry is now conducting an exercise as part of which they show a new set of pictures and text warnings to people to understand the effectiveness of the warnings and know the reaction of the consumers. "The aim of the exercise is to find out if the new set of pictures and text warnings are impactful or not. Our teams are going to people and taking their suggestions," said a senior official of the Health Ministry. "We are also planning to print the National Tobacco Cessation QuitLine number (1800-22-77-87) on packets. Also, the text warnings will mention the diseases caused due to consumption of tobacco," he said. According to the second Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS-2) published in June, tobacco use has gone down by six percentage points from 34.6 per cent of the country's adult population in 2009-10 to 28.6 per cent in 2016-17.

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