Thu. Sep 23rd, 2021
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A study by the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and the University of the Philippines College of Mass Communication Foundation Inc. (UPCMCFI) rated the National Capital Region (NCR) as having a “satisfactory to very satisfactory” in enforcing and following anti-smoking policies.

The Smoke-Free Compliance Study was conducted to determine the level of compliance in implementing smoke-free policies in five local government units in the NCR, or the cities of Muntinlupa, Caloocan, San Juan, and Mandaluyong, and municipality of Pateros, which have passed their respective comprehensive smoke-free and vape-free ordinances in 2017.

After more than a year, the study was conducted to identify how people responded to the ordinances.

The study showed that residents and establishments in the five local government units (LGUs) rated as “satisfactory” to “very satisfactory” the compliance on advertising and promotions, ordinance enforcement, selling and display, and use of tobacco and electronic nicotine delivery systems products (ENDS) products.

The compliance to the presence of pictorial health warnings and reporting officers and the absence of non-compliant tobacco sellers, however, need to be further improved.

The LGUs were assessed in four compliance metrics, such as advertising and promotion; enforcement; selling and distribution; and smoking and ENDS use in public places, including schools, transportation terminals, and public utility vehicles.

“Through the collaborative efforts of Metro Manila LGUs, we will transition from highly compliant to totally smoke-free cities soon. Quitting smoking is one of the best ways to safeguard our health especially during this Covid-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic,” MMDA Chairman Danilo Lim said in a press release.

To achieve a high level of success in implementing the laws/ordinances concerning smoking regulation and smoking cessation programs, it was recommended that LGUs strengthen existing policies equipped with a standardized monitoring system and execute the laws up to the barangay level.

Dr. Loida Alzona, director of the MMDA Health and Environmental Protection Office, commended the efforts of the 17 Metro Manila LGUs in promoting a healthy environment toward achieving 100-percent smoke-free cities vision, adding that a similar study will be conducted in other LGUs.The Smoke-Free Compliance Study was conducted by the MMDA and UPCMCFI from December 2019 to February 2020 to determine the effectiveness of various ordinances relevant to the smoke-free campaign of the government. JONATHAN ARACELI FOR SOVEREIGNPH

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