SMOKING KILLS AT LEAST 300 ANNUALLY IN FIJI

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SUVA, Fiji (July 17, 1997 - PACNEWS)---Fiji's Ministry of Health says at least 300 people die each year in the South Pacific country as a result of smoking.

In addition, annual medical costs associated with smoking related diseases total an estimated $US3.4 million.

The new government statistics also show that over one-third of Fiji's population smoke, and most are indigenous Fijians. Since the mid-1960's, according to the report, there has been a notable increase in hypertension, stroke, heart disease, and non-communicable diseases throughout the nation.

The Fiji Ministry of Health report is expected to be vigorously discussed, and possibly hotly debated, during a two-day health workshop now underway in Suva.

 

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