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Research Cancer Communication Capacity Building Patient Support Tobacco Control
Title of Project:
Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Tobacco Use and Tobacco Control Policy in India
Considering the impact of tobacco use in young adults there is an urgent need to understand what influences the initiation process during adolescence. This project is to learn about the health and habits of adolescents and their parents/primary caregivers. The main focus is on tobacco use, but the study also examines alcohol use, physical activity, and consumption of certain foods.  Interviewers will conduct community-level household survey to measure the compliance to Tobacco Control Laws (COTPA, 2003) among adolescents (12 – 14 years). This study will be conducted over a period of 4 years where investigators will visit households in designated KMC wards and collect data using a digital questionnaire. The data collected from the interviews will be used to find out how family, school, and community factors influence tobacco use and other health habits.

The project is being conducted in Mumbai and Kolkata, India simultaneously which reflects considerable variation in socioeconomic development, culture, tobacco control policy implementation, and tobacco use. It is a partnership project with researchers from the University of Michigan and the University of Los Angeles Schools of Public Health. Target population: A cohort of 910 adolescents and their parent/primary caregiver in urban population under Kolkata Municipal Corporation area.
Supported by: Healis Sekhsaria Institute for Public Health, Mumbai
Period: 2017 – 2021
Coordinator: Sutapa Biswas
Project Status: Ongoing
Title of Project:
Tobacco Control Project – Wave II
This is a continuation of the cohort multi-centric study as in Wave I. In this Wave II the cohort of 2600 respondents of Wave I are being re contacted to record their responses. The major aim is to find out changes in their tobacco usages pattern, behaviour and level of awareness of the tobacco control policies and also the harmful effects of tobacco use.
Target Population: A cohort of 2600 respondents in urban (Kolkata Municipal area) and rural (North 24 pgs) population.
Supported by: Healis-Sekhsaria Institute for Public Health, Navi Mumbai
Period: July 2012 - September 2013
Coordinator: Soma Roy Chowdhury, PhD
Project Status: Completed

Title of Project:
Development of a Civil Society Action Model to Implement & Sustain Smoke-free Rules in the District of Howrah in West Bengal (India).

India has well-defined Tobacco control law (Cigarettes & Other Tobacco Products Act, 2003) to restrict the use of tobacco in the country. One of the provisions of the law also prohibits Smoking in Public places (Prohibition of Smoking in Public Places Rules, 2008). However, this law has not been implemented uniformly around the country hence there is a need to develop Smoke-free initiatives tailor-made to specific settings. Creation of Smoke-free places is a successful approach to reduce the harmful effects of second hand smoke but in India it had limited success. In India, most attempts for smoke-free have been focused towards urban areas and increasingly a need is felt to create smoke-free rural districts.

This project proposes to develop a replicable model by implementing the Smoke-free laws in Howrah district of West Bengal towards making it Smoke-free by 2012. This initiative will lead to the development of a customized smoke-free model which would provide the necessary inputs for addressing the challenges faced in making the districts of India smoke-free.
Target Population: Howrah district population
Supported by: Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use, USA
Period: 2010 - 2012
Investigator / Coordinator: Sutapa Biswas and Soma Roy Chowdhury
Project Status: Completed
Title of Project:
Tobacco Control Project (TCP) India- Wave 1
This is a project undertaken to evaluate different aspects of tobacco control in the population. The International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project is being conducted in 20 countries globally. It is a multi-centric project conducted in 4 states in India: Maharastra, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar & West Bengal. The main objective is to find out the prevalence of tobacco use among urban and rural Indian adults-both males and females, awareness about the harmful effects of tobacco use and the attitude & opinion about the anti tobacco campaigns. The survey will be done among 2000 tobacco users and 500 non-users using structured questionnaire through personal interviews.
Target Population: A cohort of 2600 respondents in urban( Kolkata Municipal area) and rural (North 24 pgs) population
Supported by: Healis-Sekhsaria Institute for Public Health, Navi Mumbai
Period: July 2010 - December 2011
Coordinator: Soma Roy Chowdhury, PhD
Project Status: Completed
Title of Project:
Partnership Against Tobacco and Action for Policies, Politics, Legislation & Empowerment (PAT-APPLE)

This project is a supportive initiative for effective implementation of the Tobacco Control Laws (COTPA 2003). The overall strategy for this project is to reach out to a greater section of population, mobilize more civil society groups and mainstream tobacco control work at the grassroots level. In addition, the project will continue to mount a coordinated campaign initiative against tobacco in partnership with other Bloomberg Global Initiative-funded organizations at the national and state level. It will have a strong component of advocacy efforts at the grassroots, capacity building and monitoring / reporting of COTPA and its violation.

Target Population: Citizens of West Bengal state
Supported by: Voluntary Health Association of India, New Delhi
Period: 2009 - 2010
Investigator / Coordinator: Sutapa Biswas
Project Status: Completed
Title of Project:
Tobacco prevalence in adolescent urban and rural School-going students in West Bengal

A widespread usage of tobacco in a variety of forms in India has become one of the major public health issues. Tobacco is used by the youth all over India. Statistics reveal that 2 in every 10 boys and 1 in every 10 girls are addicted to tobacco in various forms. Prevalence of tobacco usage among the adolescents is increasing and the average age at which they start using tobacco is lowering. Since tobacco is a form of nicotine addiction, adolescent smoker and chewer are likely to become adult tobacco users as well. More than 80% of current adult tobacco users started smoking / chewing before the age of 18. CFI conducted the survey in both rural and urban schools in several districts of West Bengal to generate the baseline data related to tobacco habits, which can be utilized for intervention studies.

Supported by: CFI
Period: 2005 - 2008
Investigator / Coordinator: Sutapa Biswas, Maqsood Siddiqi, Soma Roy Choudhury
Project status: Completed