The Lancet: Preventing cancer: the only way forward (3) Knowledge of the health risks of smoking (2)

20 August, 2022

Thank you for highlighting smoking in Jordan among pregnant women. There is a lot of misinformation around smoking in Jordan like many other health issues. The biggest misinformation is that doctors who are supposed to advice people to stop smoking are heavy smokers. It would be impossible to advice somebody to stop smoking while one is smoking. Few days back I was at the electronics shop and did talk to the shopkeeper asking him throw away the cigarette as smoking kills. By sheer chance another person came into the shop and was welcomed as Dr X. I did naively say “that the doctor will support me in what I am saying”. To may shock the doctor says “my own father has been smoking for the last 30 years and he is still in a very good health”. The shopkeeper wished the father well and said smoking never kills. Alas. I was defeated in that battle.

Best regards

Najeeb Al-Shorbaji

HIFA profile: Najeeb Al-Shorbaji recently retired from the World Health Organization (WHO), where he has worked since 1988 in different capacities. He was most recently Director of the Knowledge, Ethics and Research Department at WHO headquarters, Geneva. Previously he was Coordinator for Knowledge Management and Sharing in EMRO (Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office), Egypt. He is a member of a number of national and international professional societies and associations specialised in information management and health informatics. He has authored over 100 research papers and articles presented in various conferences and published in professional journals. He is a member of the HIFA Steering Group. shorbajin AT