Tobacco Control Policy Advocacy Training Workshop, Sapa, Vietnam

The American Cancer Society and the Vietnam Steering Committee on Smoking and Health (VINACOSH) held the Tobacco Control Policy Advocacy & Enforcement Training Workshop March 2-5 in Sapa, Vietnam. The purpose of the workshop was to develop a strategic action plan to effectively implement tobacco control measures in Vietnam.

The workshop was attended by a group of Vietnamese tobacco control nongovernmental organizations, including VINACOSH, and representatives of the Vietnam Ministry of Health. The participants started their action plan development work by identifying primary tobacco issues in Vietnam, including the need to raise tobacco taxes to reduce tobacco consumption, the high exposure of the public to secondhand smoke, and the need to raise awareness of tobacco laws among Vietnamese policy-makers. This was followed by the creation of a logic model, identification of next steps, and setting up a timeline for implementation of the plan.

The American Cancer Society team included Laura Nathan, PhD, chair, American Cancer Society California Division; Dr. Eva Lean, president, American Cancer Society California Division; Lila Johnson, national secretary, American Cancer Society National Board, and Tuyet Ha-Iaconis, manager, American Cancer Society Global Health Department’s Vietnam Program. Key stakeholders from other organizations included Dr. Ly Kinh, director, VINACOSH; and representatives of the World Health Organization; Health Bridge Canada; Family Health International; Community Development Services; Hanoi School of Public Health; and the Vietnam Public Health Association.

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