Finalists (Japanese to English)

The following six entries (#33, #39, #52, #53, #62, and #64) have made it to the final round.

Entry 33

Chapter 3
Examples of anti-smoking measures and their effects

Chapter 3 discusses warning labels, anti-smoking advertising campaigns, the relationship between price and consumption, support and guidance in quitting smoking, health education, and the anti-smoking measures being taken by international organizations.

Currently, countries throughout the world are educating people about the effects of smoking on health and using legislation to regulate smoking in a variety of ways, and research into the effectiveness of these methods is being conducted. For example, a report from Australia has found that immediately after warning labels are introduced people remember their contents, but that the percentage of people who still remember the contents after a month decreases, and a U.S. report claims that changing the contents of the labels without changing the style is ineffective. In Canada and Australia various methods have been used in recent years, such as displaying photographs on the warning labels of tobacco products for visual effect and requiring that labels containing different messages, of different shapes and sizes are displayed after one another.

Reports regarding the effect of prices increases on tobacco consumption claim that when price hikes for tobacco products exceed the rates of increase for other products and for wages, the result is a decrease in consumption; particularly among under-age smokers and people in low-income groups.

Numerous studies and reports are being conducted into the effects of the many intervention efforts being made into the habits of smokers in various countries in order to help people quit smoking. Provision of guidance by medical professionals has been discovered to result in significantly higher numbers of smokers quitting, compared to cases where medical professionals are not involved in providing guidance. Further, the effectiveness of the guidance is enhanced even further when conducted by several people.

In Japan too, educational measures to prevent people taking up smoking are being implemented. These efforts are not only focused on providing information about the effects of smoking on health. Since the 1990s they have also included programs that concentrate on noticing the social factors that trigger smoking in young people and providing the skills to deal with their effects. In addition, the new curriculum guidelines to be fully implemented from the 2002 school year clearly state that education to prevent people from starting smoking be conducted in the sixth year of elementary school.

As shown by the above examples, various anti-smoking measures are currently in use in countries throughout the world. However, in view of the inequity between countries regarding the resources necessary for such counter-measures and in order to expand economic activity beyond the borders of multinational corporations, the World Health Organization (WHO) resolved to prepare the “Framework Convention on Tobacco Control” at the 1996 World Health Conference and negotiations between governments are now underway with the aim of adopting the framework in May 2003.

Entry 39

Chapter 3

Intervention Strategies for Tobacco Control and the Effects Thereof


Chapter 3, in reference to tobacco control, discusses the administration of warning labels, advertising campaigns against tobacco smoking, pricing and consumption, assistance programs for quitting, health education, and the involvement of international organizations.

Currently, countries outside Japan are taking various initiatives to educate people about the health risks of tobacco smoking and to institute regulations for tobacco control. Studies are also being conducted to determine their effectiveness. A report from Australia shows awareness among people regarding the content of warning labels is highest directly following implementation but decreases after one month. Another report from the United States demonstrates that changing the text in warning label alone is ineffective and must be accompanied with a change in format. Canada and Australia have recently adopted a method to visually appeal to consumers by using graphic warning labels along with other approaches such as mandating the size and order in which multiple messages are phrased.

Another study shows the correlation between increases in price and its affect on consumption. Raising the price of tobacco products exceeding the rate of inflation and growth in average income leads to a decrease in tobacco consumption, particularly among minors and lower income groups.

As an intervention strategy to help quit smoking, other countries engage in assistance programs promoting non-smoking, along with research projects confirming their effectiveness. In comparison with no intervention, a report suggests that programs assisted by healthcare professionals help reduce the amount of smoking significantly and programs incorporating the support from multiple resources further increase their effectiveness.

In Japan, we are pursuing educational outreach to prevent smoking, not only by providing information concerning the health risks of smoking, but by promoting awareness of social factors that contribute to the initial adoption of the smoking habit among young people. In the 1990’s, we introduced programs focusing on developing skills to counteract the pressure from such social factors. The new curriculum guideline, which is to take effect in Heisei 14 (2002), requires education on smoking prevention for six grade students.

The above examples show intervention efforts across borders for tobacco control. However, issues of broadening international economic activities by multinational corporations and disparities among national administrative resources need to be addressed. Recognizing the need for multinational effort, the World Health Organization passed a resolution for initiating a Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) at the World Health Assembly in 1996. Currently, intergovernmental negotiations are in progress to prepare for prospective adoption of FCTC resolution in May of 2003.

Entry 52

Chapter 3 Outline: "Case Studies of Anti-Smoking Intervention Measures and their Effectiveness"

Chapter 3 discusses warning labels, anti-smoking advertising campaigns, the effect of cost on consumption, smoking cessation counseling and support, health education, and initiatives by international organizations and such.

Currently there are various approaches being taken in different countries with respect to legal regulations and education about the effects of smoking on health and there is a wide range of research being conducted into the effectiveness of these approaches. For example, Australia has reported that people remember the content of warning labels immediately after they are introduced, but the rate of retention drops one month after their introduction, and the US has reported that if the form of the warning label is not changed, changing the content alone is ineffective. Also, in recent years Canada and Australia have implemented measures such as the use of photographs on warning labels to increase their visual impact, and additionally have started requiring that tobacco companies make their warning labels a certain size or display multiple, different messages in sequence.

Meanwhile, it has been reported that when the price of cigarettes rises faster than the rates of inflation and income, cigarette consumption declines and this correlation is particularly strong for minors and low-wage earners.

Furthermore, smoking cessation counseling is being actively conducted in various countries as a means of intervening in the habits of smokers, and there is a large amount of research and reporting being done. According to healthcare providers and others, smoking cessation counseling results in a significant increase in the non-smoking rate when compared to cases where it is not employed, and moreover it is reported that the effectiveness of this method increases further when the counseling is conducted by multiple counselors.

In Japan too, education initiatives for the prevention of smoking are progressing, and these initiatives do not merely provide information about the effects of smoking on health. Rather, programs which make young people aware of the existence of the social factors related to smoking initiation and which focus on helping them to form the skills necessary for dealing with those factors, started to make an appearance in the 1990s. Also, since the full implementation of the new educational guidelines in 2002, it is specifically required that smoking prevention education be given in grade 6.

Anti-smoking measures are currently being carried out in various forms in different countries as described above, but at the 1996 World Health Assembly the World Health Organization (WHO), reflecting the expanding cross-border economic activities of multinational companies and the inequality among countries of the necessary resources for anti-smoking measures, voted to begin preparations for the drawing up of the "Framework Convention on Tobacco Control". Preparations are progressing with a target adoption date of May 2003, and intergovernmental negotiations are currently underway.

Entry 53

Chapter 3- Examples and Effects of Strategies to Curb Smoking—summary

This chapter looks at health warnings, anti-smoking advertisement campaigns, the relationship between pricing and consumption, anti-smoking guidance and support, health education, and the anti-smoking efforts of international organizations.

Different countries have through various methods engaged in educating their populations on the health consequences of smoking, and have imposed various legal restrictions in regard to tobacco usage, the results of which have been the focus much study. For instance, one report from Australia, which looked at health warnings, found that the contents of those warnings are remembered immediately after they are first introduced but not so much one month later. Meanwhile, another report, this time from the US, suggests that changing the contents of health warnings has no effect if the format of those warnings stays the same. In Canada and Australia, warnings in form of photographs and other such visually impacting methods have been used in recent years. Another device has been to enforce a requirement that numerous warning messages of varying size be arranged on each packet.

There are also reports to suggest a linkage between the price of tobacco and its consumption—smoking goes down when the price of tobacco rises faster than the cost of living and people's incomes. This is particularly the case for those underage and those on low incomes.

In many countries there are widespread moves towards antismoking advice that direct targets the habits of smokers. This too has spawned many studies and reports. It is found that the rate of smokers quitting the habit increases significantly when health professionals instruct the public to do so compared to when such guidance is absent. Furthermore, it is reported that such instructions are even more effective when coming from numerous sources.

Japan has also seen moves to combat smoking through education. In the 1990s, a program emerged which not only provided information concerning the health consequences of smoking, but was also attentive to the social factors underlying young people taking up smoking. A focus was then put on fostering the necessary skills to deal with those influences. Also, in the now fully implemented New Course of Learning issued by the Japanese Ministry of Education in 2002, there is an explicit directive for the provision of anti-smoking education to 6th grade elementary school children.

In this way, various strategies for tackling smoking have been employed by different countries. However, in reaction to the global economic reach of multi-national corporations and the imbalance between states in their ability to come up with the resources needed to mount anti-smoking campaigns, the World Health Organization (WHO), at the 1996 World Health Assembly, made a decision to formulate an International Framework Convention for Tobacco Control. The prospects for its adoption by May, 2003 are well under way, with ongoing negotiations between governments.

Entry 62

Chapter 3: Examples of Intervention in Tobacco Control and their Effectiveness – Abstract

In Chapter Three, we discuss warning labels, anti-tobacco advertising campaigns, price and consumption, smoking cessation counseling and support, health education, and the efforts of international and other organizations.

Currently, education on the health effects of smoking and tobacco control via legislation are being carried out in a variety of forms abroad, and a variety of research into the results of those efforts is also underway. For example, a report from Australia shows that the content of warning labels could be recalled in the period immediately following their implementation, however, one month after implementation the recollection rate declined. Another report from the United States shows that unless the format of warning labels changes, it is ineffective to change only the content of the warnings. Moreover, in Australia and Canada various approaches have been taken towards warning labels on tobacco products in recent years: in addition to employing visually evocative methods such as using photographs or other images on warning labels, requirements have also been set regarding the amount of surface area to be covered by the labels, as well as requiring that different warning messages are shown on a rotational basis.

Additionally, with regard to the effect of tobacco price hikes on tobacco consumption, reports indicate that tobacco consumption declines when the rise of the price of tobacco exceeds the rate of inflation as well as the income increase rate. This decline is especially connected to inhibiting tobacco consumption among minors and people in lower income brackets, according to reports.

Cessation counseling for smokers is also a thriving method of smoking intervention in foreign countries. A great deal of research is being done on this topic, and a number of reports have been released. One report shows that the rate of smoking cessation dramatically increases when the cessation counseling is done by healthcare professionals as compared to when a health professional is not present; when multiple practitioners are involved counseling produces even higher results.

Health education to prevent smoking has been making progress in Japan as well. These efforts are not limited to merely providing knowledge on the health effects of smoking; efforts are also being made to raise awareness among minors of the existence of societal factors related to taking up smoking at a young age. Programs focused on fostering the essential skills to cope with the influence of these societal factors have been available since the 1990s. In addition, it is clearly specified that education to prevent smoking must be provided in the sixth year of schooling, according to the new Courses of Study that will be implemented as the standards for educational courses in all elementary and secondary schools in 2002.

As such, tobacco control activities are currently taking place in many different forms in each country, however, in light of factors such as the international spread of the economic activities of multinational corporations, as well as the disparity among nations in the resources required for tobacco control activities, the World Health Organization (WHO) voted to develop a Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) at the 1996 World Health Assembly. Preparations are underway with the goal of adoption of the WHO FCTC in May 2003, and intergovernmental negotiations are currently in progress.

Entry 64

Section 3. Examples of Tobacco Control Interventions and their Effects (Summary)

Section 3 discusses warning labels, anti-smoking ad campaigns, prices and consumption, smoking cessation guidance and support, health education, and initiatives by international organizations.

Outside of Japan, tobacco control is being carried out in various forms through the use of laws and education about smoking’s effects on health, and various studies are being conducted on their effectiveness. According to an Australian report, consumers could recall the contents of a warning label immediately after its introduction, but one month after the introduction that percentage dropped. If the appearance of a warning label remains unchanged, changing the contents will have no effect, according to an American report. Also, in recent years, in addition to attracting the eyes through the use of pictures, an obligation to use certain label sizes and cycle through differing messages are among techniques used in warning labels on tobacco products in Canada and Australia.

Meanwhile, reports show that regarding the effect of raising prices on tobacco consumption, when the rise of tobacco prices exceeds the growth of income and the inflation rate, tobacco consumption decreases. This is particularly relevant to the control of tobacco consumption among minors and the low income class.

Also, smoking cessation guidance is actively being practiced outside of Japan through the use of intervention against the smoking habits of smokers, and much research is being done on the subject. According to reports, when smoking cessation guidance is given by a health care provider, smoking cessation rates are significantly higher than when guidance is not given, and furthermore, when the smoking cessation guidance is given by more than one guide, there is a further increase in guidance effectiveness.

In Japan as well, the anti-smoking education initiative continues to progress, and rather than simply providing information about the health effects of smoking, programs that introduce social factors related to starting smoking at an early age and focus on developing the skills necessary to deal with those influences started appearing in the 1990’s. Also, the new course of study fully implemented since the 2002 fiscal year stipulate that anti-smoking education be taught in the 6th grade.

In this way, various forms of tobacco control have come to be carried out in many countries. In consideration of the spread of multinational corporations’ cross-border economic activity and the imbalance between countries of resources necessary to address tobacco control, the World Health Organization (WHO) decided to request the initiation of the development the Framework Convention of Tobacco Control at the 1996 World Health Assembly. The preparation for its prospective adoption in May of 2003 continues and governmental talks are currently being held.