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DATA STORY :Global Adult Tobacco Survey

  • Published
    4th May, 2022

The Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) is a global standard for systematically monitoring adult tobacco use (smoking and smokeless) and tracking key tobacco control indicators.

In India, the first round of GATS was first implemented in 2009-10 (GATS 1) and the second round was implemented in 2016-17 (GATS 2). The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) designated data Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) as the implementing agency for carrying out the second round of GATS in India. GATS-2 was implemented in 30 states of India and two Union territories (UTs).

Tobacco use is the leading single preventable cause of death worldwide. Each year an estimated seven million deaths are attributed to the use of tobacco. On average, tobacco users lose 15 years of life. Up to half of all tobacco users will die prematurely due to tobacco-related causes by any year or time estimation. Most of these deaths will be in middle and low-income nations, which would account for almost 80 percent of all tobacco-related deaths. 

The economic costs of tobacco use are enormous, totaling more than US$ 1.4 trillion in health care costs and resulting in lost productivity which is about 1.8 percent of the world’s GDP and over 40 percent of what the world spends on school education(3). Yet tobacco remains the single most widely available and purchasable addictive substance whose purchase is legal everywhere. 

The Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) is the most important global initiative for tobacco control. One key strategy to implement FCTC is MPOWER, a technical assistance package developed by WHO that consists of six evidence-based tobacco demand reduction measures contained in the FCTC that includes:

  • Monitor tobacco use & prevention policies 
  • Protect people from tobacco smoke 
  • Offer help to quit tobacco use 
  • Warn about the dangers of tobacco 
  • Enforce bans on tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship 
  • Raise taxes on tobacco

India is the third-largest tobacco-producing nation and second-largest consumer of tobacco worldwide. Mortality due to tobacco in India is estimated at upwards of 1.3 million. India has the highest burden of both tuberculosis (TB) and Multidrug-Resistant (MDR) TB based on estimates reported in Global TB Report 2016. Smoking increases the risk of TB by more than two-and-a-half times. Smoking is also contributing in a major way to India’s increasing burden of non-communicable diseases. If current trends continue tobacco will account for 13 percent of all deaths in India by 2020.

This data story aims to highlight the findings of Global Adult Tobacco Survey-2 (GATS-2). 

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