x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

Dubai men five times more likely to smoke than women

A survey of Dubai households has found 17.2 per cent of residents smoke.

DUBAI // Men in Dubai are five times more likely to smoke than women, and 17.2 per cent of the emirate's residents are smokers, a survey has found.

Emirati men between the ages of 25 and 39 are significantly more likely to smoke than those in other age groups, although Arab expatriates are the biggest male smokers, with 30.5 per cent of them indulging in the habit - double that of Emirati men.

Based on the survey, 14.4 per cent of western expatriate women smoke, compared with just 1.5 per cent of Emirati women.

The Dubai Household Health Survey was carried out by the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) and Dubai Statistics Centre across 5,000 households, 2,500 of which were Emirati.

"This data is being analysed to understand the current healthcare needs and issues of the population in the emirate of Dubai, and will help us tailor-make our policies and plans to meet those needs," said Laila al Jassmi, the head of health policy and strategy at the DHA.

The results were released yesterday as part of efforts to get smokers to quit and stop people taking up the habit as countries around the globe mark the World Health Organisation's annual World No Tobacco Day.

The public is invited to the municipality offices from 9.30am to midday, where specialists will give lectures and presentations on the effects of smoking.

Dr Munir Hamad, of the municipality's public health services department, said 100 smokers will receive free medical care for up to eight weeks.

"We will offer free nicotine patches, health education and examinations such as chest exams and carbon monoxide levels, and follow-ups for eight weeks," said Dr Hamad.

"There will also be an exhibition on how smoking damages the body, in collaboration with Dubai Medical College.