Achievement of tobacco free schools in India and its role in preventing tobacco initiation among adolescents
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International Institute for Population Sciences, Mumbai, India
Publication date: 2021-09-02
Corresponding author
Murali Dhar   

International Institute for Population Sciences, Mumbai, India
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2021;19(Suppl 1):A282
Adolescent is a gateway not only for many physiological, psychological changes but also for substance abuse including initiation of tobacco habits. In this view and increasing prevalence of tobacco use towards the end of the twentieth century, the WHO came out with Global Youth Tobacco Survey (GYTS) in 1999. The ultimate goal of GYTS is to monitor the extent and pattern of tobacco use among youth age 13-15 years and thereby adding to the policy planning towards the elimination of tobacco menace. In India, three rounds of GYTS conducted in 2003, 2006 and 2009 provided the estimates only at the national level. Fourth round currently under-way and expected to complete by March, 2020 is a comprehensive one and designed to provide the estimates at the state level by urban/rural and sex. During the past two decades, there have been many policy initiatives by the Government of India towards the prevention of tobacco use and ‘tobacco-free schools’ is one of them.

To assess the extent of achievement of tobacco free schools and their role in the prevention of tobacco initiation.

Data collection is a self-administered questionnaire-based using multiple-choice questions relating to tobacco use among the students and also on adherence to anti-tobacco guidelines by the schools. Confidentiality and anonymity were ensured. Appropriate bi-variate and multiple regression methods will be applied to achieve objectives

Preliminary analysis of partial data has shown good adherence of the guidelines by the schools and a sharp decline in almost all forms of tobacco use among youth. However, there was weak association between the two indicating the role of social, psychological and family background related variables.

Need of the hour is to enforce the anti – tobacco policies in totality and more aggressively and also to focus on the role of other social, psychological and family aspects of youth population that may be contributing to tobacco initiation.

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