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Gaceta Sanitaria

Print version ISSN 0213-9111


VILLALBI, Joan Ramón et al. Smoke-free areas: persuasion and enforcement. Gac Sanit [online]. 2008, vol.22, n.6, pp.614-617. ISSN 0213-9111.

This paper presents the actions taken by the public health services in the city of Barcelona (Catalonia, Spain) to improve compliance with the requirements of the new 28/2005 tobacco control law. These were essentially informative at first, with a second phase where authority enforcement mechanisms were activated. In workplaces, educational settings and transport the law was incorporated without incidents nor relevant complaints, except for isolated incidents in some university or mass transport settings. In food establishments the process has been more complex. Estimating the frequency of related events, there are 17.5 formal citizen complaints for 100,000 person-years. Inspections generated by citizen complaints resulted in 3.3 administrative proceedings for 100,000 person-years, mostly for incurring in serious violations. Effectively enforcing the law required active information and communication policies, as well as the real enforcement by health authority. This caused an important workload to the public health services.

Keywords : Smoking; Regulation; Evaluation; Health authority; Public health.

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