The World Bank has released data indicating that, if no action is taken, by 2050 they will die 520 million smokers as a result of pathologies related to tobacco consumption. According to their forecasts, if taking the proper precautions, it would be possible to reduce by 50% the number of young people who start smoking before 2020, the number of deaths due to diseases related to this habit would reach 500 million in 2050. However, if measures are also established that help people who already smoke to quit smoking, the number of smokers could be halved and, therefore, by 2050, the deaths attributed to tobacco use would be 340 million; In total, 180 million people could be prevented from prematurely passing away.

When a smoker wants to quit tobacco their chances of success multiply by two and even by three, with an appropriate medical follow-up

In the opinion of the experts quitting smoking is the best option for the health of the 'hooked' to the habit. But there are many studies that show that, when a smoker makes a firm decision to quit, if he does not have external support, his chances of achieving it are estimated between 5 and 10 percent maximum. However, when the same individual tries with an appropriate medical follow-up, the chances of achieving it multiply by two and even by three.

Due to this, the Spanish Society of Pneumology and Thoracic Surgery (SEPAR) and the Spanish Society of Primary Care Physicians (SEMERGEN), have recorded that the new Tobacco Law, although it has contributed significantly to improving the health of citizens , it needs to be complemented with initiatives of the health authorities, aimed at supporting people who wish to quit.

Dr. José Luis Díaz-Maroto, who coordinates the SEMERGEN smoking group, and Dr. Carlos Jiménez, coordinator of the smoking area of ​​SEPAR, believe that physicians should indicate to all smokers who come for consultation the convenience of Give up the habit, and offer them information and support to get it. Both experts believe that this aid should focus on three aspects.

To begin with, support for smokers should be generalized, and assistance extended to these patients, from primary care, to other specialists and hospital centers. For this, it is necessary that health professionals are well trained in the diagnosis and treatment of smoking. In addition, it is necessary to create Specialized Units in Smoking, where research and teaching tasks are carried out, and which can be derived to those smokers who need it. Finally, they consider that the treatments to combat smoking should have public funding, as is already the case with other chronic diseases, and that free access to these treatments should be provided to smokers throughout Spain, so that everyone has equal opportunities. .

Sources: SEPAR and SEMERGEN

E-Cigarettes : Welcome Back, Big Tobacco - the fifth estate (November 2019).