Tobacco or health: Status in the Americas : A report of the Pan American Health Organization
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Tobacco, as has been amply proven, is hazardous to people's health. Nevertheless, in many of the countries of the Americas increasing urbanization and changing lifestyles have resulted in greater use of tobacco. At the same time, health and disease patterns in the developing countries of the hemisphere are undergoing and "epidemiologic transition," with chronic noncommunicable diseases displacing infectious diseases as the primary causes of morbidity and mortality. In the next few decades, these countries can be expected to face, and will need to prepare for, an epidemic of smoking-related diseases, particularly lung cancer, and a proportionaly imposing burden on national health services. To confront that epidemic and alleviate that burden, greater understanding is necessary of the historical, economic, political, and publich health aspects of the suppply, demand, and consumption of tobacco. This publication aims to further that understanding by providing information on the general socioeconomic context, the tobacco industry, tobacco use, smoking and its effects on health, and smoking prevention and control activities in the countries of Latin America, the Caribean, and Canada. Most of the information contained in this pulication cannot e found in any other single source. It will thus serve as a baseline of data for developing countries in the Region as they engage in the complex issues involved in preventing and controlling tobacco use. Health workers, researchers, and policy makers can use the information presented here to build a coalition against what may prove to be the most important pulic health problem of the 1990s
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