RACGP welcomes Victorian state ban on smoking in pubs and clubs

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) Victorian Faculty today welcomed the State Government announcement of an end to smoking in pubs and clubs by 2007.

“As general practitioners, we are concerned for the health and welfare of our patients who are patrons or employees of these venues,” said Dr Mark Nelson, RACGP Victorian Faculty Vice Chair.

“People who work in, or frequent, these locations have no choice in being exposed to the significant negative health impacts of passive smoking.

“The College welcomes today’s announcement but, in the interest of the health of all Victorians, believes the government should implement the ban sooner.

“We will continue to advocate for a national ban on smoking in all pubs and clubs in Australia.

“The RACGP continues to take a lead in combating the health impacts of tobacco on our patients and our community. As a College, we have called for strengthened health warnings on tobacco products, and have developed and distributed the National Smoking Cessation Guidelines for General Practitioners.”

The RACGP SNAP (Smoking, Nutrition, Alcohol, Physical Activity) Guide, launched at the recent RACGP Annual Scientific Convention, has been distributed to every general practitioner in Australia. The Guide will assist General Practitioners to work with their patients to achieve changes in lifestyle, with the aim of preventing illness.

“Each cigarette costs Australia in lives and money. As a nation, we spend a staggering $21 billion in health care and other costs each year dealing with the impacts of tobacco.

“The State Government’s actions today will go a long way to preventing illness in our community.”

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