Health officials should take steps to control tobacco

Article 5.3 of the FCTC, an international treaty, emphasizes the protection of tobacco control policies. The Department of Health is playing a very important role in implementing the steps taken to strengthen the immune system of the people and to develop the health system. Officials of the Department of Health need to have a specific code of conduct to accelerate infectious disease and tobacco control programmes.

This was stated by the speakers at a view-exchange meeting titled 'Preparation of Code of Conduct for Implementation of FCTC Article 5.3' on Monday in the conference room of the new building of the Department of Health. The meeting was jointly organised by the Department of Health and Work for a Better Bangladesh (WBB) Trust. Director of the Department of Health's Non-Communicable Disease Control Programme Dr. Md. Habibur Rahman presided over the seminar while Director General of the Department of Health Dr. Abul Basar Mohammad Khurshid Alam attended as the chief guest. 

Additional Director General (Administration) of the Department of Health, Prof. Dr. Nasima Sultana, Additional Director General (Planning and Development) Prof. Mirzadi Sebrina Flora, Syed Mahbubul Alam, Technical Consultant of The Union were present as the special guests.

Deputy Programme Manager of the Department of Health Dr. SM Mustafizur Rahman conducted the seminar and Programme Manager  WBB Trus Syeda Ananya Rahman presented an essay. Welcoming remarks were made by Gauss Pieri, Director of WBB Trust.

In the main article, Syeda Ananya Rahman said, we have come a long way in tobacco control. 

Several important laws and policies have been enacted to control tobacco in the country. At the moment, their protection is very important. The implementation of the policies acquired as a result of the intervention of the tobacco companies is progressing at a slow pace. As a signatory to the International Tobacco Control Convention Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), Article 5.3 requires that steps be taken to protect all public health sectors, including tobacco control, from the influence of tobacco companies.

 Dr. Nasima Sultana said the government is working to make the country tobacco free. The issue of tobacco control needs to be included in all official forms and citizen charters. It is important for officials involved in public health services to take steps to control tobacco. The Department of Health may send a message of preference for non-smokers and discouragement of smokers and tobacco users.