Effect of school based smoking prevention program in Korea
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Korea Health Promotion Institute, Tobacco Control Program Team, Korea, Republic of
Publication date: 2018-03-01
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2018;16(Suppl 1):A407
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Background and challenges to implementation:
Tobacco use is a leading cause of preventable death, and is estimated to cause about 60,000 deaths a year in Korea. Smoking in adolescents causes more physical damage than adults.
The younger age of starting smoking has high potential to become lifelong smokers, the more difficult it becomes to quit. The school is the place where students spend the most time and has the best conditions for smoking prevention. Until 2014, only 10% of schools participated the program nationwide.
The most outstanding policy was about 80% increase of tobacco price in 2015 for the first time in 10 years. We expanded implementation of smoking prevention education in all elementary, middle and high schools nationwide with increased budget.
The aim of the project is to reduce the smoking rate of adolescents by operating a school-based program that prevents students from accessing tobacco in advance and encourages smoking cessation.

Intervention or response:
We are improving the efficiency of our projects that matches the characteristics of each school. Types of programs include non-smoking declaration, smoking prevention education and activities, smoking cessation, education for faculty and parents, training, campaign, and specialized program throughout the year.

Results and lessons learnt:
Smoking rate in adolescents has the lowest rate ever recorded during 10 years due to project expansion and raising tobacco price. We believe this has consistently influence decreased smoking rate among youth. Also, results of the school based project survey in 2015, Of the 65,428 students, 83.4% answered that they would not smoke in the future, and 38.7% of the smoking students reduce or quit smoking after education, and 74.9% of smoking students can refuse smoking after education.

Conclusions and key recommendations:
Through continuous school based projects, we will create a smoke free school environment to support the healthy growth of students and to become the foundation for spreading the culture of smoke free community.

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