ASH Daily news for 04 June 2015
June 4, 2015
- Mental health patients ‘smoke three times as much’
- Canadian ruling spells pain for tobacco companies
- Wales: Plan to ban smoking on beach and in parks in Pembrokeshire
- Ukraine drops lawsuit against Australia over plain-packaging tobacco laws
- US: Tobacco companies drop suit against FDA over labelling
- Spectator blog: The anti-smoking pressure group whose “wackiest” ideas always become law
Mental health patients ‘smoke three times as much’
A Public Health England and NHS survey of 105 care units suggests that mental health patients smoke significantly more than the general population.
Whilst around 18% of the general population smoke, the survey found smoking rates amongst mental health patients were 3 times higher at around 64%.
PHE is publishing new guidance to help medium- and low-security mental-health units implement NICE recommendations that all NHS-funded hospitals provide stop-smoking services. Kevin Fenton, PHE national director of health and wellbeing said the organisation wanted to “reduce the unacceptable inequalities in health experienced by people living with mental-health problems”.Source: BBC News, 04 June 2014
Canadian ruling spells pain for tobacco companies
Tobacco shares fell following concerns that a legal ruling in a Canadian court could set a precedent for cases across the globe.
BAT and Imperial were among the biggest fallers as investors reacted to a ruling which ordered three companies to pay £8.2 billion to two groups of smokers who claimed they had failed to warn them properly about the risks of smoking.
The Times note that as the tobacco companies try to put out the fire, another one has threatened to emerge. Jane Ellison, the public health minister, is due to attend a parliamentary launch of [ASH’s] report entitled Smoking Still Kills which has been endorsed by over 120 organisations, calling on the government to impose an annual levy on tobacco companies.Source: The Times, 03 June 2015
Wales: Plan to ban smoking on beach and in parks in Pembrokeshire
Pembrokeshire council is considering banning smoking on council owned parks, sports grounds, playing fields, car parks and one, yet to be selected, beach in a bid to discourage young people from smoking.
The ban which will be discussed today would extend to the use of electronic cigarettes.Source: BBC News, 04 June 2015
Ukraine drops lawsuit against Australia over plain-packaging tobacco laws
The World Trade Organisation reports that Ukraine has suspended its legal proceedings against Australia which claimed standardised packaging tobacco laws were trade-restrictive.
Ukraine was the first of five countries, to challenge Australia’s laws at the WTO, even though it does not export tobacco to Australia. British American Tobacco has previously said it was helping meet Ukraine’s legal costs in the case against Australia, as individual companies are unable to pursue litigation via the WTO.Source: ABC Australia, 04 June 2015
US: Tobacco companies drop suit against FDA over labelling
Altria Group, Reynolds American and Lorillard have dropped a federal lawsuit against the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) after challenging a recent effort to assert authority over labels on tobacco products.
The suit was dropped after the FDA announced it would review a policy that would have required tobacco companies to secure federal approval if they made packaging changes such as switching a background colour from green to red, altering a logo or adding such words as “premium tobacco.”Source: Wall Street Journal, 02 June 2015
Spectator blog: The anti-smoking pressure group whose “wackiest” ideas always become law
Christopher Snowdon has written a blog for the Spectator commenting on a leaked early draft of ASH’s new report Smoking Still Kills.
[Editorial note: Smoking Still Kills will be launched on Wednesday 10th June.
Source: Spectator Blog, 01 June 2015