ASH Daily News 21 September 2017



UK

  • Stoptober backs e-cigarettes for the first time
  • Success rates for people quitting smoking hit record high
  • Scotland: Key stakeholders in tobacco and health publish e-cigarette consensus agreement

International

  • EU: Raising tobacco taxes could reduce smoking-related deaths in EU, study finds
  • EU: Tax trade body warns EU over tobacco “tracking and tracing” plans
  • Poland: Tobacco consumption halved since the 1990s

Parliamentary Activity

  • Mayor’s Questions

 

UK
Stoptober backs e-cigarettes for the first time

Stoptober, the annual campaign to promote quitting smoking in England, will feature e-cigarettes as a possible tool for quitting in its TV adverts. This is the first time e-cigarettes have featured in such a way in the campaign.

The move comes after e-cigarettes proved the most popular tool for quitting during last year’s campaign. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has just published draft guidance for consultation on smoking cessation interventions and services. The draft guidance says smokers should be asked about their use of e-cigarettes, should be told that though these products are not licensed they are regulated by the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016, and should also be told that some smokers have found them helpful to quit.

See also
Public Health England: Stoptober Overview and Resources
NICE: Consultation: Smoking cessation interventions and services

Source: BBC, 21 September 2017
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Success rates for people quitting smoking hit record high

Success rates for quitting smoking are at a record high, according to a report from University College London. Almost 20% of attempts to quit were successful in 2017, the study found. This compares favourably with the past decade’s average success rate of 15.7%.

This improvement in the likelihood of quitting has been driven by an increase in quitting among the least well off. For the first time, those who smoke and work in routine and manual jobs have around the same success rate as those in managerial roles.

The improvement in quitting success has been attributed partly to the increased prevalence of e-cigarettes in the UK.

Source: The Guardian, 19 September 2017
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Scotland: Key stakeholders in tobacco and health publish e-cigarette consensus agreement

Key stakeholders in Scotland working on tobacco and health have agreed that using e-cigarettes is “definitely less harmful” than smoking tobacco.

The consensus statement was led by NHS Health Scotland, and backed by over 20 partners in Government, academia, third sector, and the NHS. Sheila Duffy, Chief Executive of ASH Scotland, said, “This statement brings some clarity to an issue which has caused confusion.”

Linda Bauld, Professor of Health Policy at the University of Stirling, said: “It is good to see NHS Health Scotland and partners making it clear that e-cigarettes are less harmful than tobacco.”

Source: BBC, 20 September 2017
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International
EU: Raising tobacco taxes could reduce smoking-related deaths in EU, study finds

A new study has affirmed that raising prices of tobacco through taxation could reduce cigarette consumption, and smoking-related deaths across the EU. The study used a model to analyse the impact of a 10% increase of tax on tobacco.

Raising tax on tobacco is one of the “MPOWER” tobacco control policies proposed by the World Health Organization.

See also
BMC Public Health: The effects of a rise in cigarette price on cigarette consumption, tobacco taxation revenues, and of smoking-related deaths in 28 EU countries– applying threshold regression modelling

Source: BioMed Central, 21 September 2017
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EU: Tax trade body warns EU over tobacco “tracking and tracing” plans

The International Tax Stamp Association (ITSA) has warned that there are “failings” in the EU’s plans for preventing the proliferation of illicit tobacco.

The organisation is concerned about the “tracking and tracing” element of the EU Tobacco Products Directive, claiming that in its current state, manufacturers could “manipulate” the unique identifier used in this process. It also claimed that the draft legislation does not guarantee independence from the tobacco industry.

Source: Packaging News, 21 September 2017
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Poland: Tobacco consumption halved since the 1990s

Tobacco consumption has more than halved since the 1990s in Poland, according to the World Health Organization Report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic 2017.

Poles currently smoke around 40 billion cigarettes per year, compared with 100 billion per year in the 1990s. The proportion of smokers has fallen from 42% in the 1980s to 24% in 2015.

Poland has introduced a raft of policies aimed at reducing tobacco use over past years. Poland’s Deputy Health Minister has said, “We want cigarettes to be expensive, unappealing and hard to access”.

Source: The News, 21 September 2017
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Parliamentary Activity
London Mayor’s Questions

Question 1: Smoking in Vehicles
Peter Whittle
To ask the Mayor how many fines the Metropolitan Police has handed out since the ban on adults smoking while a child was present in their car was introduced earlier this year.

Rt. Hon. Sadiq Khan
From 1 October 2015 (when smoking in a vehicle with children under the age of 18 became law) to 1 August 2017, the MPS has recorded two incidents. In both incidents, a verbal warning was given and no fine issued.

The Department of Health and the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) have advocated a period of education first before the issuing of any Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs)/Traffic Offence Reports (TORs) takes place. This is echoed in guidance issued by the National Police Chiefs Council.

Source: Question 2017/3552
Link: London Assembly