ASH Daily News 1 June 2018



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UK

  • Forum of International Respiratory Societies warns of e-cigarette use
  • New data shows smoking costs Sunderland £71million a year
  • Royal United Hospital in Bath to ban smoking
  • Coventry: Smokers flouting ban at Nuneaton’s hospital

International

  • Rapid rise in vaping seen around the world
  • New Zealand: End Smoking campaigners welcome Snus

Link of the week

  • ASH’s updated ‘Ready Reckoner’ tool launched

 

UK

Forum of International Respiratory Societies warns of e-cigarette use

A panel of researchers, from the Forum of International Respiratory Societies, say there is growing concern that using e-cigarettes – commonly known as ‘vaping’ – damages health and is highly addictive. They argue that vaping is a ‘one-way bridge’ to smoking tobacco for people lured in by the attractive flavours of e-cigarettes. However, e-cigarette use among people in the UK is almost entirely confined to current/ex-smokers.

Rosanna O’Connor, from Public Heath England, said UK regulation of e-cigarettes is among the strictest in the world, with safety standards, packaging and labelling requirements, a ban on almost all forms of advertising and a minimum age of sale.

Professor Peter Hajek, from the tobacco research unit at Queen Mary University of London, said: ‘If regulators acted on the recommendations made here and banned e-cig flavourings, they would risk pushing some of the millions of vapers from the much safer alternative back to smoking, emphysema and lung cancer.’

Source: Daily Mail, 31 May 2018
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New data shows smoking costs Sunderland £71million a year

Smoking is costing Sunderland more than £70 million a year, new figures estimate. The data shows the additional pressure that smoking is putting on hospitals and GP surgeries, with the NHS in Sunderland spending £13m on smoking related illness each year. It is estimated that £46.2million of potential wealth is lost from the local economy as a result of smoking-related lost productivity.

The city’s 40,266 smokers spend on average £2,050 a year on cigarettes meaning that Sunderland’s smokers spend roughly £84m on tobacco products annually.

Ailsa Rutter OBE, director of the regional tobacco control group Fresh, said: “We already know that smoking deprives people of many years of good health and robs families of years they could spend with loved ones. But these figures show the damage it does to communities, costing every individual, every family, every GP surgery, every council, business and hospital.”

Source: Sunderland Echo, 31 May 2018
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Royal United Hospital in Bath to ban smoking

Smoking will be fully banned at the Royal United Hospital in Bath by the end of the year. It is currently advertised as a smokefree site, but there are designated shelters for lighting up that will be removed to end the ‘conflicting messages’. Vaping will be allowed but anyone wanting to smoke will have to leave the site completely.

Director of people Claire Ridley told the hospital trust board: “There is some concern we are giving conflicting messages. We are smoke free but have smoking shelters. Probably the most challenging aspect is enforcement. What expectation do we have on our staff? What sanctions could there be for repeat offenders? Enforcement is the key to this.”

Source: Somerset Live, 31 May 2018
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Coventry: Smokers breaching ban at Nuneaton’s hospital

The George Eliot Hospital in Nuneaton went totally smokefree back in January 2016, but hospital officials say people are still ignoring the ban. The main reception and the entrances to the Maternity building are the hotspot areas for smoking.

Dr Catherine Free, a medical director, said: “Although there has been a reduction in the number of people smoking on site since going smoke free, there is still room for improvement. We ask visitors and patients to support our policy and protect others by refraining to smoke on site.”

Source: Coventry Telegraph, 1 June 2018
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International

Rapid rise in vaping seen around the world

Globally, the number of vapers has been increasing rapidly – from about seven million in 2011 to 35 million in 2016. However, laws around the world relating to e-cigarettes vary drastically. Countries including the Seychelles, Brazil and Argentina have banned their sale altogether. In some places they are seen as a useful quitting aid for cigarette smokers.

The global vapour products market is now estimated to be worth $22.6bn (£17.1bn) – up from $4.2bn just five years ago. The United States, Japan and the UK are the biggest markets for e-cigarettes or smokeless tobacco products. Vapers in the three countries spent a combined $16.3bn on smokeless tobacco and vaping products in 2016.

Source: BBC News, 31 May 2018
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New Zealand: End Smoking campaigners welcome Snus

End Smoking New Zealand supports the introduction of Swedish snus, which will soon be available in New Zealand. It is something the group has been lobbying for more than a decade.

Snus is a small pouch of tobacco that delivers nicotine when the user places it between their gum and top lip. Snus has helped Sweden achieve one of the lowest smoking rates in the world, now reported to be close to 5 per cent – the first country to come close to reaching New Zealand’s Smokefree 2025 goal.

“End Smoking New Zealand has long advocated for a variety of reduced harm alternatives to be available to smokers, to help them find a way of stopping smoking that suits them,” Dr Penny Truman says.

Source: Scoop, 1 June 2018
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Link of the week

ASH’s updated ‘Ready Reckoner’ tool launched

New data published for World No Tobacco Day 31st May, by Action on Smoking Health shows that smoking costs communities in England £12.6 billion a year.

The figures show the additional pressure that smoking is putting on the NHS and social care services including annual costs of £2.5 billion to the NHS, and over £760 million to local authorities from smoking-related social care needs. Local authorities can use an easily accessible web tool to break the data down to local level so they can see the impact on their communities.

You can access the Reckoner here: http://ash.lelan.co.uk/

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