Psychology Lecturer Sally Adams met with psychologists from Universidad Nacional de Colombia (UNAL) in Bogota, Colombia, to discuss an ongoing collaboration to investigate Colombian tobacco control measures.

The collaboration started during her first visit to UNAL in 2017 when she made contact with psychologists working on the development of new health warning labels on tobacco with the Ministry of Health in Colombia.

This year, Adams, Dr Ricardo Tamayo and Dr Arturo Alvaro from UNAL, and Dr Olivia Maynard from the University of Bristol, came together once again in Bogota. The researchers discussed their first wave of findings on the effectiveness of the new tobacco health warnings in Colombia and their upcoming research exploring emotional responses to these warnings.

With smoking causing up to 13% of deaths among adults in Colombia and the numbers set to increase, the team’s research will examine explicit and implicit reactions to tobacco health warnings. The aim is to improve understanding of how smokers respond to warnings, which in turn may help to develop more persuasive and effective warnings with the aim of encouraging more smokers to quit.

During the visit, the research team also met with members of the Colombian Ministry of Health who are leading work on tobacco control in Colombia. They discussed key priorities for further research that would support tobacco control in Colombia. At the end of the project, the research team will provide important evidence regarding the impact of these measures to the Colombian Ministry of Health.

Dr Sally Adams said: “Our research will provide important ‘local evidence’ regarding the impact of tobacco control measures in Colombia that can be used by policymakers.”

“Additionally, our work represents opportunity for capacity-building of a research network between academics working in the field of tobacco control and international government partners in Colombia.”