Iceland considers cigarettes to be prescription only.

Prescription-controlled cigarettes in Iceland

Southeast coast of Iceland ( Photographed by Dr. Miyamoto )

Iceland is considering banning the sale of cigarettes and making them the productto be sold by prescription.
Bhutan has already completely outlawed smoking.The proposal also suggested that tobacco smoke should
be treated as a carcinogenic substance, and that it should be restricted in a similar way as carcinogens,
because of the well-known effects of passive smoking.

Dr. Gudnason did a study five months after Iceland introduced a smoking ban in restaurants and pubs in 2007
and found a 21% reduction in acute coronary syndrome, heart attacks and near heart attacks, among non-smoking
men, compared to five months before the ban. Iceland has successfully halved smoking rates over the past 20 years.
In the year of 1991, 30% of the population smoked; today, only about 15% light up regularly, giving it the lowest
smoking rates in Europe.

This success is attributed to huge increases in tobacco tax, which accounts for about 25% of the pack price, as
well as the drop in disposable income among islanders since the financial crash of 2008. Swedish surgeons now
refuse to operate on smokers until they give up, because of the deleterious effect smoking has on the healing
process, Dr. Gudnason added. Because of an isolated island, Iceland arguably stands a greater chance of success
with such draconian measures than other nations. With no neighboring countries and rigid custom's controls at
ports and airports, it will be difficult for anyone to smuggle in contraband cigarettes.

The radical initiative is a part of the 10-year plan that also aims to ban smoking in all public places, including
pavements and parks, and in cars where children are present. Iceland also wants to follow Australia's lead by
forcing tobacco manufacturers to sell cigarettes in plain, brown packaging plastered with health warnings rather
than branding. Under the mooted law, doctors will be encouraged to help addicts kick the habit with treatments
and education programs. If these do not work, they may prescribe cigarettes.

The aim is to protect children and youngsters and stop them from starting to smoke. Smokers who are given
prescriptions will be diagnosed as addicts. Nicotine should be classified as an addictive substance. It is hard to
give up nicotine just like heroin.

It is proposed that the Iceland government should license cigarettes like a medicine, which would mean they would
have to go through the same rigorous trials as any other drug. Cigarettes would ever get on the market now that
we know the side-effects, lung cancer, heart attacks, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Dr. Gudnason, a
cardiologist, said that 300 out of 1,500 deaths in Iceland each year were caused by one of those three conditions.
That is 20% of all deaths. They think that their proposals could lead to a significant reduction in smoking-related
Source: July 4, 2011

Glacier lake of Fjallsarlon, Iceland ( Photographed by Dr. Miyamoto )


Arrival to Reykjavik Blue Lagoon Pingvellir, Strokkur Gullfoss Hekla Skogafoss, Vik Glacia
Akureyri, Husavik Dettifoss, Myvatn City of Reykjavik

Smoking Ban in Restaurants and Bars of Iceland アイスランドでレストラン、カフェ、バーなどを全面禁煙
Fresh and clean air country, Iceland 2009

執筆 医学博士 宮本順伯
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This information was provided by the Smokefree Hotel and Travel.

The article was written by Dr. Junhaku Miyamoto, in June 2012.
Copyright(C) 2012 Junhaku Miyamoto, All rights reserved.

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Fresh and Clean Air Country Iceland

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