Seven years of progress in tobacco control: an evaluation of the effect of nations meeting the highest level MPOWER measures between 2007 and 2014

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Since WHO released the package of six MPOWER measures to assist nations with implementing the WHO Framework Convention for Tobacco Control (FCTC), 88 countries adopted at least one highest level MPOWER measure. We estimated the subsequent reduction in smoking-related deaths from all new highest level measures adopted between 2007 and 2014.


Policy effect sizes based on previously validated SimSmoke models were applied to the number of smokers in each nation to determine the reduction in the number of smokers from policy adoption. On the basis of research that half of all smokers die from smoking, we derived the smoking-attributable deaths (SADs) averted of those smokers alive today.


In total, 88 countries adopted at least one highest level MPOWER policy between 2007 and 2014, resulting in almost 22 million fewer projected SADs. The largest number of future SADs averted was due to increased cigarette taxes (7.0 million), followed by comprehensive smoke-free laws (5.4 million), large graphic health warnings (4.1 million), comprehensive marketing bans (3.8 million) and comprehensive cessation interventions (1.5 million).


These findings demonstrate the immense public health impact of tobacco control policies adopted globally since the WHO-FCTC and highlight the importance of more countries adopting highest level MPOWER measures to reduce the global burden of tobacco use. Substantial additional progress could be made, especially if heavily populated nations with high smoking prevalence were to reach highest level MPOWER measures.

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