- Integra Africa Principal Tendai Mhizha says more emphasis should be put on how to reduce the harm.
- In Kenya the Tobacco Control Act, 2007 is the principal law governing tobacco control in Kenya.
Health sector stakeholders have challenged African Countries to consider harm reduction strategies in dealing with various health behaviors.
Top in the list is Tobacco products that have been termed as the most commonly abused.
In Kenya the Tobacco Control Act, 2007 is the principal law governing tobacco control in Kenya. This comprehensive law defines keys terms and covers topics including, but not limited to, restrictions on public smoking; tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship; and packaging and labeling of tobacco products.
According to Integra Africa Principal Dr. Tendai Mhizha more emphasis should be put on harm reduction of Tobacco by encouraging the use of e-cigarette not the burning nicotine.
She says you cannot use the law to enforce morals. She asked journalists to synthesize misinformation and disinformation in Tobacco harm reduction discussions.
“The media play a critical role in accelerating the progress towards full uptake of harm reduction strategies in all spheres of health across the continent. With the advent of technology, we find that misinformation and disinformation are becoming increasingly prevalent with the democratization of the information space. Moving forward, there is a need to ensure that stakeholders are well informed with current and relevant information about the science, the changes that occur and how we can advance towards a smoke-free world,” Dr. Tendai said.
Raising awareness for tobacco harm reduction (THR) as a public health strategy encourages adult smokers who are unable or uninterested in quitting tobacco altogether to migrate to noncombustible product alternatives. THR has the potential to bring about one of the greatest public health achievements of our time,” Tendai added.
Harm Reduction Approach
Meanwhile the president of the African Medical Association and the Association of Medical Councils of Africa Dr. Kgosi Letlape challenged African governments to adopt harm reduction approaches when regulating public health challenges.
“Harm reduction is a practical and transformative approach that incorporates community-driven public health strategies including prevention, risk reduction, and health promotion to empower people who use drugs and their families with the choice to live healthy and self-directed,” Dr. Kgosi said.