Greece: Immediate application of anti-smoking law required says experts

In his central speech, European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety Vitten A. Andriukaitis, at the central event of the Hellenic Cancer Society, commented on smoking, its interruption and its serious impact on public health, on the occasion of today’s World Day against of cancer.

Mr Anthurium stressed that smokers die 14 years earlier than non-smokers. “We have to be interested in these people but also in the passive smokers,” he said, pointing out that our country is “the first country in Europe to smoke, although smoking has been decreasing in recent years. Passive smoking exists in Greece at a rate of 78%. At this rate the exposure of passive smokers is the highest in Europe “.


The European Commissioner has spoken about 20% increase in smoking among young people in recent years in the EU. and called on the government and the opposition to implement the anti-smoking law in Greece, saying the beginning should be done by the Greek Parliament.

“Smoking smashes the lives of our children, pollutes our environment and kills us slowly,” he concluded, speaking in Greek by the Commissioner.

A. Xanthos: 8 axes are based on the National Strategy for Prevention and Tackling Cancer

Although cancer is still the world’s second most common lethal disease, one-third of cancers can be prevented today, all the speakers stressed at the Hellenic Cancer Cancer Society’s main event for tonight in collaboration with the Ministry Health Center at the “Lighthouse” of the “Stavros Niarchos Foundation” Cultural Center.

The Minister of Health, Andreas Xanthos, addressed the Health Ministry’s interventions in the framework of the National Strategy for Prevention and Tackling Cancer, aiming to cover the needs of all patients for medicines – including uninsured cancer patients – and to strengthen the public care with staff recruitment and financial support for structures.

In his introduction, A. Xanthos stressed that 20% of deaths in women and 30% of deaths in men are due to cancer. As he said, in 2018 Greece recorded 180,000 diagnosed cancer patients over the past 5 years and spoke of a major public health problem.

Mr. Xanthos analyzed the National Strategy for the Prevention and Treatment of Cancer based on 8 axes: establishment of a National Institute of Neoplasms, direct access of oncological patients to innovative therapies, integration of diagnostic and therapeutic protocols in e-prescribing, training of reliable Patient Registers, development of the Medical Precision Unit Network, approval of new biomarkers compensation by EOPYY, upgrading the care for cancer patients and preparation of a national plan to prevent and systematic screening for cancer.

Especially for smoking, Mr. Xanthos underlined that “we have an obligation to immediately and resolutely overcome the timeless implementation of the anti-smoking law. We all have a duty, the State, the political system, the scientific community, social bodies, professional associations, to help create a social front for the implementation of anti-smoking legislation aimed at protecting individual and public health from the proven damaging effect of an addictive behavior can not be tolerated in closed public spaces. It is a matter of respecting basic terms and basic public health standards, it is a matter of respecting human rights, a culture of social responsibility and a culture of a country. ”


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