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Consultative Meeting to Identify the Future Tobacco Control Research Needs in Bangladesh

Consultative Meeting to Identify the

Future Tobacco Control Research Needs in Bangladesh held 17th August 2022

Bangladesh Center for Communication Programs (BCCP) in collaboration with the National Tobacco Control Cell (NTCC) and Bangladesh Tobacco Control Research Network (BTCRN) organized a Consultative Meeting to Identify the Future Tobacco Control Research Needs in Bangladesh on August 17, 2022, at BMA Bhaban, Dhaka. The purpose of the meeting was to identify research themes to develop a Call for Proposal for the 2023 Tobacco Control Policy Research Grant Program. While the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare is working to make another law amendment considering several key issues like banning E-cigarette, stopping the selling of single cigarette sticks, and removal of designated smoking areas from public places, organizing such a consultative meeting was an added importance, especially to generate evidence for developing effective policy advocacy programs.

A total of sixty-five people attended the meeting, including representatives from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the National Tobacco Control Cell, Bloomberg Initiative partners and grantees, public and private universities, and different non-governmental organizations.  

Kazi Zebunnessa Begum, Additional Secretary (WH Wing), Health Services Division, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare attended the meeting as the Chief Guest. Mr. Hossain Ali Khondoker, Coordinator (Additional Secretary), NTCC; Prof. Shah Monir Hossain, former Director General, DGHS; Mr. Shafiqul Islam, Head of Programs, Vital Strategies (Bangladesh); Mr. Md. Mostafizur Rahman, Lead Policy Advisor, CTFK; Dr. Syed Mahfuzul Huq, National Professional Officer, WHO Bangladesh; Syed Mahbubul Alam Tahin, Technical Advisor, The Union attended the meeting as the special guests. Mr. Aminul Islam Sujon, Program Officer, National Tobacco Control Cell (NTCC) moderated the meeting.

Dr. Zeenat Sultana, Program Director, BCCP, stated the introduction and objectives of the meeting. Mr. Mohammad Shamimul Islam, Team Leader, JHSPH-BCCP Tobacco Control Program made a presentation on the Tobacco Control Policy Research Grant Program highlighting the objectives, implementation processes, outcome, and sustainability issues of the program.

Kazi Zebunnessa Begum, Additional Secretary (WH Wing), Health Services Division, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare addressed the importance of

The Tobacco Control Policy Research Grant Program considers proposals on the WHO MPOWER package. Hence, Dr. Syed Mahfuzul Huq, National Professional Officer, WHO Bangladesh made a presentation on "WHO MPOWER" to familiarize the participants with the different components of MPOWER. He explained it as provided below with some examples for each component:

M- Monitoring tobacco use

P- Protecting people from tobacco smoke

O- Offer help to quit tobacco

W- Warning about the danger of tobacco

E- Enforcing the tobacco advertisement, promotion, and sponsorship bans

R- Raise taxes on tobacco

A breakout session was held to identify the future tobacco control research needs in Bangladesh. All the participants were divided into three groups to work on the MPOWER components. Group A worked on "M, P" while Group B and Group C worked on "O, W" and "E, R" respectively. After the group work, each group shared their findings in the plenary.  

The Chief Guest, Ms. Kazi Zebunnessa Begum, appreciated JHSPH and BCCP to undertake the Tobacco Control Research Grant Program. She recommended compiling the recommendations of all research studies and organizing a daylong workshop to identify the ways for implementing the recommendations.