DOH urges MTRCB to block smoking scenes in movie, TV shows

Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB)

The Department of Health has appealed to the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) to ban scenes featuring smoking in movies and television shows.

Health Secretary Paulyn Jean Ubial said her department would want to work with the agency in blocking scenes and photographs of actors and actresses in the act of smoking.

“We ask the MTRCB to consider censoring scenes depicting smoking in movies and TV shows, the way we asked them not to show scenes of bottle-feeding years back,” Ubial said.

She made the remarks early this week at a news conference on the celebration of the National No Smoking Month.

Ubial’s appeal at banning smoking scenes in movies and TV shows is aimed at protecting the youth from being influenced to take up smoking.

Earlier, President Rodrigo Duterte signed an executive order implementing the designation of smoke-free areas nationwide and banning smoking in public places and public transport.

The DOH said it was looking at expanding its smoking cessation program to help smokers who would be pushed to quit the harmful habit as a result of the nationwide smoking ban.

Ubial pointed out that around P188 billion is spent a year on patients suffering from diseases which stem from tobacco smoking. /atm