Linking Global Youth Tobacco Survey (GYTS) data to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC): the case for the Seychelles.Prev Med 2008; 47 Suppl 1:S33-7PM
Tobacco control has been recognized as a main public health concern in Seychelles for the past two decades. Tobacco advertising, sponsoring and promotion has been banned for years, tobacco products are submitted to high taxes, high-profile awareness programs are organized regularly, and several other control measures have been implemented. The Republic of Seychelles was the first country to ratify the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) in the African region. Three population-based surveys have been conducted in adults in Seychelles and results showed a substantial decrease in the prevalence of smoking among adults between 1989 and 2004. A first survey in adolescents was conducted in Seychelles in 2002 (the Global Youth Tobacco Survey, GYTS) in a representative sample of 1321 girls and boys aged 13-15 years. The results show that approximately half of students had tried smoking and a quarter of both boys and girls had smoked at least one cigarette during the past 30 days. Although "current smoking" is defined differently in adolescents (>or=1 cigarette during the past 30 days) and in adults (>or=1 cigarette per day), which precludes direct comparison, the high smoking prevalence in youth in Seychelles likely predicts an increasing prevalence of tobacco use in the next adult generation, particularly in women. GYTS 2002 also provides important data on a wide range of specific individual and societal factors influencing tobacco use. Hence, GYTS can be a powerful tool for monitoring the situation of tobacco use in adolescents, for highlighting the need for new policy and programs, and for evaluating the impact of current and future programs.