Achieving the very first successful smoke free city in Myanmar: a case study of Shan State
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Ministry of Health and Sports, State Health Department, Myanmar
SEATCA, Health Promotion Fund, Thailand
Publication date: 2018-03-01
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2018;16(Suppl 1):A697
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Background and challenges to implementation:
Myanmar became the party of FCTC in 2004. The National Programme on Tobacco Control was officially launched in January 2000 before becoming the party. Despite of the commitment that Myanmar government has and the national law prohibits smoking in many areas including public, the implementation is a huge challenge when there is no funding specifically for tobacco control.

Intervention or response:
Starting form 2014, Tobacco Control Cell, Ministry of Health Myanmar in collaboration with Southeast Asia Tobacco Control Alliance conducted national smoke free workshop. With the guidance of National Programme on Tobacco Control, it was decided that smoke free cities are needed to develop in Myanmar. Inle region and Pindaya cave from Shan State were selected to implement, which are tourist attractive areas, during the workshop.

Results and lessons learnt:
Different advocacy meetings with several stakeholders were conducted. After getting the political commitment, different strategies were discussed in detailed with major stakeholders who will be involving with the campaign. The campaign started with the education and awareness raising period using the smoke volunteers who are trained with the standard manual. Several coordination meetings were conducted for better collaboration among different stakeholders. The campaign was successful launched on 10 September 2015.

Conclusions and key recommendations:
There were many challenges and obstacles along the way including but not limited to funding, political support, ownership problem and interest from other related sectors. The main successful factor is gaining the political commitment from the state government. Dr. U Myo Tun, the State Social Welfare Minister, is the champion of the smoke free Shan movement. Keeping the lessons learnt from the past few years, Shan is planning to move forward with more places and cities in the near future.

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