ASH Daily News 26 July 2017



  • How one mental health Trust in Leicestershire is using e-cigarettes as a tool to go smokefree
  • Yorkshire: Police raids in Huddersfield town centre see 60,000 illicit cigarettes taken off the streets
  • USA: Record number in U.S. say smoking, secondhand smoke is very harmful
  • South-East Asia: Countries urged to improve implementation of tobacco tax policies
  • France: Study shows nicotine increases social stress levels in mice

 

How one mental health Trust in Leicestershire is using e-cigarettes as a tool to go smokefree

As part of their commitment to the health and wellbeing of their patients and staff, Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust started working towards going smokefree in April 2015. A core part of their service is caring for people with mental health problems, a group who are much more likely to smoke, and to smoke more heavily, than the general population, leading to poorer physical health and lower life expectancy.

It was decided early on in the implementation process that mental health wards would be looked at first as these had the most potential obstacles to overcome. With many mental health patients having prolonged stays in hospital, the needs of these patients are paramount and addressing these can assist in their recovery. It was essential therefore that the approach to becoming smokefree was not to force people into stopping smoking but to provide and offer other options.

Louise Ross, Stop Smoking Service Manager, said: “The patients understood why the wards would become smokefree, but they wanted to use e-cigarettes as a way to manage their nicotine needs. Our policy was written to reflect their views, and every effort has been made to help patients, staff and visitors see this as a positive step forward.”

Source: Public Health Matters, 25 July 2017
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Yorkshire: Police raids in Huddersfield town centre see 60,000 illicit cigarettes taken off the streets

More than 60,000 illicit cigarettes worth more than £50,000 were seized by police and trading standards officers in a series of raids in Huddersfield town centre last weekend.

West Yorkshire Police teamed up with West Yorkshire Trading Standards, Wagtail UK tobacco detection dogs and other partner agencies including licencing and security staff during the operation on 22 July.

David Lodge, head of West Yorkshire Trading Standards, said: “All tobacco is harmful, but the supply of illegal cigarettes seriously undermines the drive to reduce smoking, fuels organised criminality and is often a gateway for young people to becoming addicted to a habit which prematurely kills over half its users.”

Source: The Huddersfield Daily Examiner, 25 July 2017
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USA: Record number in U.S. say smoking, secondhand is smoke very harmful

85% of Americans believe smoking is very harmful to adults who smoke, and 59% say secondhand smoke is very harmful to adults. Both percentages are the highest recorded by Gallup.

When Gallup first asked in 1994 how harmful secondhand smoke is to adults, 36% thought secondhand smoke was very harmful. The subsequent rise in this belief has paralleled the implementation of public smoking bans throughout the nation.

However, smokers are much less likely to regard smoking as harmful than are nonsmokers, including both those who never smoked and those who smoked at some point in their life but have since quit.

Source: Gallup, 25 July 2017
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South-East Asia: Countries urged to improve implementation of tobacco tax policies

Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) governments should do more to make their tobacco tax policies more effective. This was the recommendation of the tobacco tax index issued by the South-East Asia Tobacco Control Alliance (SEATCA).

The index tracked progress of the tobacco tax policy against WHO FCTC Article 6 Guidelines and showed that while some countries have made significant progress in formulating and implementing tobacco tax policies, the region as a whole has advanced at a slow pace in recent years, with tax increases outpaced by economic and income growth. According to the index, cigarettes are becoming more affordable in ASEAN countries.

Source: Vietnam News, 25 July 2017
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France: Study shows nicotine increases social stress levels in mice

Researchers from the French National Centre for Scientific Research found that exposure to nicotine produced a stressing effect on lab mice, rather than withdrawal from it, which is commonly seen as anxiety-inducing in smokers.

“Researchers have also been able to confirm that a mouse subjected to a single act of aggression by one of its fellow mice showed signs of stress only if it had been previously exposed to nicotine,” the study said.

Although the research focused on mice, the Centre said it would now study whether the results were translatable to human beings, as well as look into nicotine’s effects on other mood disorders.

Source: Financial Express, 25 July 2017
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