• Costa Rica Real Estate

Costa Rica’s Social Security System is going to text you to stop smoking

January 22, 2014

Costa Rica’s Social Security System, or the Caja, wants to reduce the number of people who smoke, as well as the high costs public hospitals incur in treating patients with tobacco-related illness.

In 2013, the Caja spent almost ₡90 billion ($179 million) on treating patients with smoking-related cardiovascular disease and cancer, the two leading causes of death in Costa Rica, according to a Caja report released Wednesday.

Caja Medical Director María Villalta Bonilla said the anti-smoking campaign includes distributing information and promoting recreational activities.

“Most of (the campaign) targets young people, who are the most vulnerable population,” she said.

The five-year initiative includes ads in national media and on mobile platforms, and sports and arts activities in schools. Suggested activities include drama, music and dance clubs, among others, Villalta said.

The Caja this month launched the campaign, which will be paid for by taxes and fines from the country’s anti-smoking law, by sending short text messages to mobile phones and posting them on social media.

In 2012, President Laura Chinchilla signed a law banning smoking in public places such as bars, restaurants, public buildings, bus stops and taxi stands.

A survey by the Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Institute that year estimated the number of smokers in Costa Rica at 480,000 people, mostly men over 20. On average, 10 people die every day from tobacco-related diseases, the Caja claims.

Facebook Comments

You may be interested

Seven arrested in Costa Rica for bomb attacks
Costa Rica
28 views
Costa Rica
28 views

Seven arrested in Costa Rica for bomb attacks

AFP and The Tico Times - October 22, 2019

Seven members of a Costa Rican gang accused of carrying out two bomb attacks at the headquarters of the Legislative…

Three Colombians detained in Costa Rica with 1.4 metric tons of cocaine
Colombia
48 views
Colombia
48 views

Three Colombians detained in Costa Rica with 1.4 metric tons of cocaine

AFP and The Tico Times - October 22, 2019

Costa Rican authorities intercepted a boat with 1,410 kilos of cocaine on Monday and arrested three Colombians who were on…

Vice President Epsy Campbell out of hospital following health scare
Costa Rica
27 views
Costa Rica
27 views

Vice President Epsy Campbell out of hospital following health scare

Alejandro Zúñiga - October 22, 2019

Vice President Epsy Campbell was treated Monday at Calderón Guardia Hospital in San José after presenting with elevated blood pressure.…

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!