ASH Daily News 16 June 2017



  • Smoking rate in UK falls to second lowest in Europe
  • Concern raised around smoking rates during pregnancy in England
  • Yorkshire and the Humber: Rate of death caused by smoking in varies across the country
  • USA: Youth tobacco use in 2016 fell by largest amount in 6 years

 

Smoking rate in UK falls to second lowest in Europe

Smoking rates across the UK continue to fall, showing a sharp decline since 2010 among younger people, latest figures reveal.

In 2016, 15.8% of adults in the UK smoked, down from 17.2% in 2015, according to data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS). Some 15.5% of adults in 2016 smoked in England, rising to 18.1% in Northern Ireland, 17.7% in Scotland and 16.9% in Wales.

The chief executive of the health charity ASH, Deborah Arnott, said: “One in two lifetime smokers will die from smoking-related disease, so a fall in smoking rates of this scale will save many thousands of lives in years to come. This proves that tobacco control policies work when they are part of a comprehensive strategy and are properly funded.”

See also: ONS: Adult smoking habits in the UK: 2016.

Source: The Guardian, 15 June 2017
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Concern raised around smoking rates during pregnancy in England

The reduction in smoking rates among pregnant women in England has slowed down in the past year, prompting concern from health charities. NHS figures show 10.5% of women currently smoke at the time of delivery – a drop of only 0.1% on last year.

A Department of Health spokeswoman said it was “encouraging to see smoking rates at their lowest ever levels, but smoking still kills around 79,000 people in England every year so the battle is by no means won. We have taken bold action to protect the public by introducing standardised packaging for cigarettes, making it illegal to smoke in a car with a child and covering up tobacco products in shops.” She said a new tobacco control strategy to drive down smoking rates even further would be published “in due course”.

The Smoking in Pregnancy Challenge Group said smoking was the cause of too many babies born with health problems. The group of health charities, which includes the Royal College of Midwives, Action on Smoking and Health and the Lullaby Trust, said good progress had been made in recent years to reduce smoking in pregnant women. In 2012-13, 12.7% of women in England were smoking when their baby was born, figures from NHS Digital show.

Francine Bates, co-chair of the group and chief executive of the Lullaby Trust, said: “We cannot afford to go backwards, having made good progress. The government must urgently publish the now long promised Tobacco Control Plan to not only address smoking in pregnancy but ensure that fewer women are smoking when they become pregnant.”

Hazel Cheeseman, director of policy at Action on Smoking and Health, which co-ordinates the group, said: “This work must continue, and it is important that smoking continues to be a priority if the government’s targets to reduce stillbirths are to be met.”

See also: Statistics on Women’s Smoking Status at Time of Delivery, England.

Source: BBC, 15 June 2017
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Yorkshire and the Humber: Rate of death caused by smoking in varies across the country

In Hull, a total of 485 adults in every 100,000 people die as a direct result of smoking each year on average, which is the second highest rate behind Manchester.

Those diseases include various forms of cancer, heart disease and respiratory disorders.

The place with the lowest rate of deaths caused by smoking is Harrow in London, with 183 deaths per 100,000 population.

Source: Hull Daily Mail, 15 June 2017
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USA: Youth tobacco use in 2016 fell by largest amount in 6 years

Youth tobacco use in the United States fell to historic lows in 2016, leading public health experts to speculate that a smokefree generation may be within reach.

The number of middle and high school students who used any tobacco product fell to 3.9 million in 2016 from 4.7 million in 2015, figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show, the first such decline since the CDC began reporting the measure in 2011.

The decline in cigarette use follows a broad array of public health campaigns and coincides with the rise of vaping.

Source: Reuters, 15 June 2017
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