01 June 2010
The Centre has initiated many anti–tobacco awareness programmes. But Karnataka has failed miserably to implement them. Why? Helpless officials blame it on funds crunch and fewer hands at work
The Tobacco Cessation Centre (TCC) at Victoria Hospital’s OPD stopped functioning for almost six months now, thanks to lack of adequate manpower and funds.
The school education programme for creating awareness among students against use of tobacco hasn’t been implemented properly. "No proper guidelines were issued for implementation. Secondly, because of funds crunch for TCC, we were forced to use the allocated money for the school education programme. In the first phase, we organized a training programme for North Bangalore school.
However, only 20 teachers were able to participate as others were busy with the census," said Riyaz Basha S, assistant professor public health, Bangalore Medical College Research Institute (BMCRI).
Prakash, nodal officer, state anti–tobacco cell, said: "Due to lack of funds and manpower, we recently integrated the programme with the National Rural Health Mission." BMCRI director G T Subhash said they have recommended inclusion of self–health group members for creating awareness on the antitobacco campaign. To observe World No–Tobacco Day, the district anti–tobacco cell organized an awareness rally from Siddhaiah Road to BMCRI.
Commenting on the loopholes in implementing NTCP, Prakash said: "For implementing the programme, we need to adopt a multi–departmental approach. Law–enforcing authorities must ensure its strict implementation just like it’s done against drunken driving."
- Indian Dental Association’s Bangalore Chapter organized a walkathon for students of Ambedkar Dental College to spread awareness on hazards of smoking. Pamphlets and handouts were distributed to educate smokers.
- M S Ramaiah Memorial Hospital showed slides and video at its OPD to patients and visitors. Harmful effects of tobacco and various measures to kick the butt were announced
- M S Ramaiah Dental College students took out a rally with placards to spread awareness