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The 13th World Conference on Tobacco OR Health

Building capacity for a tobacco-free world

July 12-15, 2006, Washington, DC, USA

Friday, July 14, 2006 - 3:45 PM

Evaluating the Effects of Warning Labels on Adult Smokers in Thailand: Findings from the ITC Thailand Survey

Buppha Sirirassamee, Ph.D.1, Chanya Sethaput, Ph.D.1, Phillip Guest, Ph.D.1, Aree Prommoh, Ph.D.1, Warangkana Polprasert, PhD2, Pariya Gainroj, MBA.1, Ron Borland, PhD, MAPS3, Hua-Hie Yong, PhD3, Geoffrey T. Fong, PhD4, and Hana Ross, PhD5. (1) Institute for Population and Social Research, 25/25 Salaya, Phuthamonthol, Nakhornpathom, 73170, Thailand, (2) School of Health Science, Sukothai Thammathirat Open University, Nonthaburi 11120, Nonthaburi, Thailand, (3) VicHealth Centre for Tobacco Control, The Cancer Council Victoria, 100 Drummond Street, Carlton, 3053, Victoria, Australia, (4) Department of Psychology, University of Waterloo, 200 University Avenue West, Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1, Canada, (5) RTI International, 3040 Cornwallis Rd, P.O.Box 12194, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2194

Objective: evaluate the prevalence of looking closely at cigarette warning labels and associated effects on adult smokers in Thailand.

Methods: A cohort of 2,000 adult smokers aged 18 years and over was recruited via a face-to-face interview from five regions in Thailand as part of the International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation survey –Southeast Asia project.

Results: The baseline survey revealed that about 77 percent of the smokers reported that they sometimes or often read or looked closely at the health warning labels on cigarette packages. The frequency of looking closely at the health warning labels was unrelated to knowledge about the health effects of smoking. More than 90 percent of respondents had good knowledge of the health impact of smoking. There was also evidence that the more often smokers looked closely at the health warning labels, the more they reported that the warning labels made them thought about the health risks of smoking and also the more they were made to think about quitting.

Conclusion : There is some evidence that increased exposure to health warning labels on cigarette packs could stimulate smokers to think about the danger of smoking and also about quitting.