Smoking costs $1.4 tn in health care, labour loss


Smoking cost the world economy more than $1.4 trillion (1.3 trillion euros) in 2012, and sucked up a twentieth of health care spending, a study and the killer habit consumed the equivalent of nearly two percent of global economic output or GDP, according to experts from the World Health Organization (WHO) and the American Cancer Society, with almost 40 percent of the burden falling on developing countries and these included a $422 billion price tag for treatment and hospitalisation, as well as indirect costs from labour lost to illness and death and Smoking imposes a heavy economic burden throughout the world, particularly in Europe and North America, where the tobacco epidemic is most advanced,” said the study published in the journal Tobacco Control, these findings highlight the urgent need for countries to implement stronger tobacco control measures to address these costs, and the authors say the study is the first ever to include low- and middle-income countries in a more accurate estimate of the tobacco epidemic´s total, global cost and most previous work has focused on rich nations, team used data from 152 countries representing 97 percent of the world´s smokers in Africa, the Americas, the Eastern Mediterranean, Europe, Southeast Asia and the Western Pacific, they included UN and World Bank data on illness and death attributable to smoking, national employment rates and national GDP. they found, “diseases caused by smoking accounted for 12 percent (2.1 million) of all deaths among working age adults aged 30-69 — with the highest proportion in Europe and the Americas In 2012 and 40 percent of the global economic cost was borne by low- and middle-income countries — a quarter by Brazil, Russia, India and China alone, china consumes over a third of the world´s cigarettes and has a sixth of the global smoking death toll. And the researchers said the real cost was likely much higher, curbing the habit globally would go a long way towards achieving one of the UN´s Sustainable Development Goals — to cut premature deaths from non-infectious diseases by a third by 2030 and Tobacco use is “one of the biggest public health threats the world has ever faced,” according to the WHO, which says taxes are the most cost-effective deterrent.



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