Monitoring tobacco in the Netherlands
Accurate numbers and data about policies, therapies, and the population are needed to develop tobacco control policies and care strategies. The Trimbos Institute contributes to the knowledge of the Dutch and European tobacco control environment by collecting data and observing changes through a variety of large and small scale monitoring studies.
Selected monitoring studies
- The Dutch National School Survey is a national research effort regarding the use of tobacco, alcohol, drugs, and the internet among adolescents.
- The European School Survey Project on Alcohol and Other Drugs (ESPAD) is a collaborative effort of independent research teams in more than 40 European countries and is the largest cross-national research project on adolescent substance use in the world.
- The Health Behavior in School-aged Children (HSBC) survey collects data every four years on 11-, 13- and 15-year-old boys' and girls' health and well-being, social environments, and health behaviors. HBSC includes 44 countries and regions across Europe and North America.
Informing the public about the harms of tobacco
Tobacco use and exposure is a major public health crisis – one that needs immediate yet customized attention to be able to move towards its resolution. Experts and educators from the Trimbos Institute educate the public about the harms of tobacco use and exposure for everyone at every stage of life. This education is evidence-based, developed to meet the needs of the Dutch population as learned through monitoring and research activities, and available in a variety of formats, such as brochures, infographics, websites, apps, and videos. Examples of this educational outreach include:
- the Tobacco Infoline, a telephone support and information service;
- the Dutch-language Tobacco Infoline website, which contains information about tobacco use;
- a training day for municipal workers about developing effective tobacco control policies;
- a Dutch-language smoking cessation support website I'm quitting now; and
- training sessions for professionals on the basics of tobacco use and control.
Growing up smoke-free
In the Netherlands, nearly a fifth of children grow up with a smoking family member. The Trimbos Institute offers advice and training sessions on helping children to grow up smoke-free. This advice and training includes:
- training sessions and materials for midwives on helping pregnant women and their families become completely smoke-free;
- training sessions and materials for post-natal care assistants on helping new mothers and their families become completely smoke-free;
- an e-learning module on family-centered tobacco control for clinicians who see children;
- an information sheet about effective tobacco cessation interventions for pregnant women; and
- telephone coaching for parents who want to quit smoking.
Quitting smoking is one of the best ways to improve the well-being of those who smoke and those who are exposed to tobacco smoke. The Trimbos Institute works to help all people become smoke-free, especially vulnerable populations such as adolescents, pregnant women, and those with (severe) mental health disorders. Assistance from health care professionals increases the chance that smokers quit for good; the Trimbos Institute offers information and support for healthcare professionals on helping smokers quit smoking and stay quit. This support comes through tools, expert advice, and courses on smoking cessation. The Trimbos Institute regularly organizes smoking cessation training events for healthcare professionals to equip them in the skills they need to help their patients become completely tobacco-free.
Tobacco control policies
The Trimbos Institute supports municipalities and organizations in tobacco cessation by organizing information sessions about the health-related risks of smoking, gathering feedback and information about perspectives on their current smoking policy and what the policy should look like in the future, formulating goals for the new smoking policy, and implementing the new policy. Trimbos then works with municipalities and organizations to further tweak and tailor tobacco policies, evaluating these policies while developing a sustainability action plan. The Trimbos Institute supports and advises on each step of tobacco policy development.
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