WHO lauds PHL's mass media campaign to curb smoking (Philippines News Agency)

The World Health Organization (WHO) has lauded the launching of the Philippines mass media campaign to curb smoking.

As a firm believer in communications and advocacy, as an anchor provider for momentum for public healthcare programs, I am elated to know that the World Lung Foundation (WLF) has chosen the Philippines, alongside Vietnam, to embark on a nationwide mass media campaign dubbed as “Cigarettes Are Eating You Alive!, said Dr. Susan Mercado, Director for Building Communities and Population of Western Pacific Regional Office of WHO.

Although she was not present during the launching of the television media ad campaign by the Department of Health (DOH) at Diamond Hotel in Manila on Thursday, Dr. Mercado said in a statement delivered for her by Benjamin Lane, WHO acting country director in the Philippines, that the campaign will surely help in creating awareness on the harmful effects of smoking, both to adult and young citizens of the country.

Dr. Mercado assured that the Division of Non-Communicable Disease and Health at the WHO Western Pacific Regional Office remains committed and ready to fight for curbing smoking at all cost.

She noted that through the ad campaign, the Philippines is strengthening further its public health system and showing regional leadership in tobacco control through the empowerment of the health sector.

She said that various initiatives of the country such as the Sin Tax Law, the push for stronger graphic health warnings, and expected implementation in the coming years of more smoke-free pieces of legislation from local government units (LGUs) can contribute a lot in the fight versus smoking harms.

We are grateful for everybody’s help, cooperation and collaboration here and in the WPR (WHO Western Pacific Region). Let us continue to join hands and work harder for a cleaner and safer world, she stressed. (PNA) SCS/LSJ/rsm

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