HomeHealthTwenty years on, Italian Sirchia Law fails to reduce number of smokers

Twenty years on, Italian Sirchia Law fails to reduce number of smokers


It has been 20 years since the passage of a law that has significantly impacted the culture and the health of the Italian people.

It is Rule 3 of 2003, which is commonly referred to as the “Sirchia Law,” named after Girolamo Sirchia, who served as the minister of health during the second Berlusconi administration.

Let us take this opportunity to examine how people felt about the law twenty years ago and what is still relevant about it today. On January 10, 2005, the clause named “Protection of the health of nonsmokers” became active and was implemented.

But how have things changed in the twenty years since the law was first enacted? Has there been a reduction in the number of smokers? Have the diseases caused by smoking, most notably lung cancer, been eradicated? Has the so-called endgame been reached, that is, the complete eradication of smoking in Italy? No, it didn’t.

According to information that was released by the Istituto Superiore di Sanità this year, 24.2% of the population in Italy is made up of smokers. According to the institution’s findings in 2020, the number of people smoking in Italy had decreased by approximately one million since the previous year. In the year 2020, 11.6% of the population were smokers, making up about 11.6 million people. The number of people who smoked reached a historic low in 2012: 10.8 million.

In 2022, after a lengthy period of stagnation, there was a gain of two percentage points: from 22% in 2019, the final year of the pre-pandemic survey, to over 24% in 2022.

How close is Italy to ending or completely eradicating the cigarette smoking epidemic in Italy, and what are the current prospects for doing so? In 2014, 24 scientific associations in the field of public health collaborated on the creation of a manifesto in which they encouraged the Italian government to commit to a long-term “end-of-the-race” strategy for tobacco in Italy, which would be capable of reducing the percentage of smokers to below 5% within 20 to 25 years.

The year 2025 has been chosen as the endgame date in New Zealand and Ireland, 2034 in Scotland, and 2040 in Finland. Countries such as Canada, Australia, and Uruguay are among those that are moving in this general direction.

What about the Italian peninsula? After positioning itself at the forefront of tobacco control policies in Europe with the Sirchia law, Italy has yet to make much progress since then, as seen by the fact that it now ranks 18th out of 37 nations in the ranking of tobacco control policies in Europe.

Consequently, the editors of the report noted that there had been no meaningful news to report since 2005 other than the fact that the cigarette lobby in Italy is quite active.

Frontier India News Network
Frontier India News Networkhttps://frontierindia.com/briefs
Frontier India News Network is the in-house news collection and distribution agency.


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