Is the Dutch Government Abandoning Smokers?
A letter in The Lancet titled "Can the Dutch Government really be abandoning smokers to their fate?" provides commentary on the deplorable situation in The Netherlands. The Health Minister, Edith Schippers, is destroying the infrastructure for tobacco control as she also weakens the already-weak smoke-free laws, eliminates mass media, and is attempting to stop govt reimbursement for stop smoking medication.
The Health Minister claims that she is doing this because well-informed people can make their own decisions (except that ITC findings (see chart) show that the Dutch are the least well-informed and least concerned about the harms of their smoking on others) and that she is supporting free choice (except that cutting support for meds reduces choices).
- The Lancet Letter (Published Online: December 9, 2011)
- The Lancet Letter (PDF)
- ITC Netherlands Report on Smokers Awareness of the Health Risks of Smoking and Exposure to Second-hand Smoke