Dedicated EU Journalist Prize on Smoking Shines Spotlight on European Commission's Anti-tobacco Campaign "Ex-Smokers are

Actualizado 30/01/2013 14:09:51 CET

BRUSSELS, January 30, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

The winners of the EU Health Prize for Journalists were announced at an awards ceremony in Brussels yesterday evening. German journalist, Tobias Zick received the prestigious special prize for articles on smoking. Zick, writing for NEON magazine was celebrated for his in-depth article "Thick Air", which explores how smoking has gone from being 'cool' to 'uncool' in Germany. The award is a noteworthy achievement for the journalist whose work was selected from amongst wide range of submissions all across the EU.

This marks the second year that the European Commission has dedicated a specific prize for journalists writing in the area of smoking, signalling the importance of delivering positive health messages to the public and reinforcing the European Commission's commitment to tobacco control across the EU. Responsible for nearly 70,000 avoidable deaths in the EU each year, smoking poses one of the greatest threats to the health of EU citizens and must be urgently addressed. Awareness campaigns are an integral part of the European Commission's pan-European tobacco control strategy and the "Ex-Smokers are Unstoppable" campaign (, now supports nearly 335,000 men and women to live smoke-free lives.

Reinforcing the value of "Ex-Smokers are Unstoppable" at the awards yesterday, was Dr Jordi Monès, Board Member responsible for the Medical Area at FC Barcelona (FCB). Monès presented the latest innovation of the "Ex-Smokers are Unstoppable" campaign, Quit Smoking With Barça (, to convened journalists. Quit Smoking With Barça is a creative and meaningful way to further promote smoking cessation across the EU by harnessing the proven success and tools of "Ex-Smokers are Unstoppable" and the support and guidance of the internationally renowned football club via a dedicated online health tool, the FCB iCoach.

Other winners of the EU Health Prize for Journalists were selected from 557 submissions covering issues related to healthcare and health services:

1st place: Petr Tresnàk writing for Respekt magazine (Czech Republic) for his article "Adventures in ward 14", which tells the story of a psychiatric hospital ward dealing with the most difficult cases, and a dedicated nurse who made a difference.

2nd place: Ailbhe Jordan writing for the Medical Independent (Ireland) for her article "Is screening a waste of cash?" which takes a stark look at the debate on the value and cost-effectiveness of cancer screening, especially breast cancer.

3rd place: Daniela Cipolloni writing for Oggi Scienza magazine (Italy) for her article "All those lies spread by umbilical cord banks", which as its title suggests, looks at the controversial subject of conserving a baby's umbilical cord for future medical treatment.

Speaking from the award ceremony, Commissioner Borg said: "All four journalists awarded tonight pull no punches both in the topics they raise and the style in which they raise them. Though on diverse topics such as mental health, cancer screening, cord blood banking and tobacco control, the common thread in the winning articles is that they confront uncomfortable issues for which debate is needed at EU level".

For more information please visit

Ex-Smokers are Unstoppable

Quit Smoking With Barça

The Public Health Portal of the European Union

The Public Website of the European Commission en.htm

CONTACT: Media enquiries: Orla Barnewell: + 44-(0); Laura Korgaonkar: +44-(0)

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