Tobacco Control in Tasmania

Tobacco Control header

Tobacco Control in Tasmania

Tobacco is the single largest preventable cause of premature death and disease in Australia.

Between 2008 and 2012, an average of 502 Tasmanians died each year from tobacco use.

Tobacco policy in Tasmania is guided by the Tasmanian Tobacco Control Plan 2017-2021 (accessible).

It provides clear direction to further reduce tobacco use and its harms through actions that all sectors and levels of government can take over the next four years.

The goal of the Plan is to improve the health, social and economic wellbeing of all Tasmanians by reducing the prevalence of tobacco use and smoking, and the inequalities it causes.

The Plan has four key areas for action:

  1. Encourage and help all people who smoke to quit for good.
  2. Prevent smoking uptake and de-normalise tobacco use.
  3. Reduce smoking by high prevalence groups.
  4. Strengthen and integrate the evidence base.

The Plan also establishes working groups to progress specific actions being:

  1. Smoke Free Young People

    The aim of this group is to prevent smoking uptake, help those who have already started smoking to quit and to create and support smoke free environments.

    It has developed the Smoke Free Generation – Be a Part of It! branding to shift attitudes, intentions and behaviours about smoking by young Tasmanians and a website that details options young Tasmanians can access to quit smoking

  2. Smoke Free Priority Populations

    The aim of this group is to develop actions to increase smoking cessation for population groups who smoke most in Tasmania being pregnant women, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, young people, middle aged males, people experiencing mental ill-health and people from low socio economic areas.

  3. Tobacco Control Evaluation
    The aim of this group is to establish a framework to ensure progress to reduce tobacco use in Tasmania can be measured over the four years of the Plan.

Snapshot of Tobacco Use in Tasmania

The Australian Health Survey 2014/15 reported 18.9 per cent of adult Tasmanians were estimated to be either daily or occasional smokers compared to 16 per cent nationally.

The same survey also reported more adult males were current smokers at 21.8 per cent compared to females at 16.8 percent and the highest smoking by age group to be by the 35 to 44 year olds at 28.7 per cent.

Smoking rates rise rapidly during adolescence with rates significantly higher for 16 and 17 year olds compared to earlier ages and increasing further in the 18 to 24 age groups.

History of Tobacco Laws

Tobacco control laws in Tasmania are regulated by the Public Health Act 1997 and have evolved over time.

Tasmanian History of Tobacco Laws

Communication with tobacco companies

Tobacco companies did not contribute to the development or implementation of the Tasmanian Tobacco Control Plan 2017-2021.

We recognise the importance of protecting the development of public health policy and tobacco legislation from the interests of tobacco companies.

As such it is our practice to only communicate with tobacco companies in their capacity as a tobacco licence holder or with respect to existing tobacco legislation.