Covid19 and Tobacco Briefing Ethiopia

 The novel coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has affected almost all aspects of life for much of the world’s population. Although evidence about who is most vulnerable to Covid-19 is emerging, very little is known about the extent to which tobacco use is a risk factor for Covid-19. In addition, how countries reconcile the need to progress tobacco control while responding to an infectious disease pandemic such as Covid-19 is unknown.

A rapid evidence review and online survey were conducted during May-June 2020 to examine tobacco use and control during Covid-19. This study built on an existing multi-country collaboration, the Tobacco Control Capacity Programme1 led by the University of Edinburgh and partner institutions in eight countries in South Asia and Africa, including Ethiopia. The study aimed to generate evidence to support these governments to make informed policy decisions about the public health response in general and tobacco control interventions in particular, in the context of Covid-19. The preparation of this policy brief was led by Addis Ababa University School of Public Health (contact details on last page).

This policy briefing reports key results from a rapid study conducted to examine the relationship between Covid-19 and tobacco control in Ethiopia.

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