ASH Daily News for 06 February 2017



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  • British smokers are switching to e-cigarettes faster than anyone else in Europe
  • ‘Extinction therapy’ could help smokers kick habit, study suggests
  • North Somerset: Ban on smoking in or near a playground planned by Council
  • Africa: Lifestyle diseases create new burden
  • Ireland: Cancer Society calls for hike in tobacco tax
  • US: Navy provides further guidance on electronic nicotine delivery systems
  • US: Altria investigating if recalled tobacco products were tampered with

British smokers are switching to e-cigarettes faster than anyone else in Europe

Britons are switching from cigarettes to electronic alternatives faster than anyone else in Europe.

Since 2013, one person has switched from traditional smoking to vaping every four minutes in the UK, according to new research from business consultancy EY.

And now more than 2m British people vape, a total of 4.2% of adults. By contrast, the next highest penetration is in France, where just over 3% use electronic products.

Source: City AM – 06 February 2017
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‘Extinction therapy’ could help smokers kick habit, study suggests

Scientists believe that lengthy exposure to environmental triggers for cravings (such as handling packets of cigarettes and watching footage of people smoking, without being allowed to light up) could be precisely what smokers need to help them quit. The technique, known as extinction therapy, targets the harmful Pavlovian associations that drive addiction with the aim of rapidly “unlearning” them.

The latest study, by scientists at the Medical University of South Carolina, found that after two one-hour sessions people smoked significantly fewer cigarettes one month after treatment compared to a control group although many participants still relapsed after treatment.

Professor Robert West, an expert in smoking cessation at University College London, said: “You’re dealing with really heavily over-learned cues. Short-circuiting the extinction process is a tough thing to do and pragmatically it might be very difficult.”

See also:
Effect of a Brief Memory Updating Intervention on Smoking Behavior, A Randomized Clinical Trial, JAMA

Source: The Guardian – 03 February 2017
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North Somerset: Ban on smoking in or near a playground planned by Council

Smoking in or near a playground could soon be banned by one Somerset council as part of a new wave of Public Space Protection Orders.

Perpetrators could be fined of up to £1,000. North Somerset Council believes the ban is an “appropriate requirement” due to the dangers that smoking poses to children.

An eight-week public consultation period will run until Friday, March 31.

Source: Somerset Live – 03 February 2017
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Africa: Lifestyle diseases create new burden

Africa, home to 54 low and middle-income countries, will have the world’s largest increase in NCD deaths over the next decade. Although communicable diseases such as malaria, TB and HIV/AIDS and other conditions still predominate in sub-Saharan Africa, WHO projects that, by 2030, NCDs will become the leading cause of death. This would impose a significant burden on the continent, whose population will double within the next generation.

Source: All Africa – 06 February 2017
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Ireland: Cancer Society calls for hike in tobacco tax

Saturday marked World Cancer Day and the Irish Cancer Society (ICS) is asking the government to make a huge increase in the cost of cigarettes in Ireland.

The ICS say one-in-four cancer deaths are caused by smoking tobacco and they want to help reduce that figure by following the example set by Australia. The Australian government has committed to raising the price of cigarettes to €28.47 (AUS$40) per packet by 2020, they currently cost €17.60 (AUS$25) per packet.

The Irish government has a policy on smoking called ‘Tobacco Free Ireland’ which aims to make Ireland tobacco-free by 2025.

Source: Joe.ie – 05 February 2017
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US: Navy provides further guidance on electronic nicotine delivery systems

In response to the Department of Defense tobacco policy updated last year and recent incidents affecting Sailor safety, U.S. Fleet Forces Command and Pacific Fleet announced fleet guidance stating Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS), including but not limited to e-cigarettes and vape pens, will be considered tobacco products and fleet commands will align with DoD policies.

In practice, this means Sailors using ENDS will now be required to follow the same regulations and use them in the same places, as if they were using a traditional tobacco product.

Source: Peking Press – 04 February 2017
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US: Altria investigating if recalled tobacco products were tampered with

Altria Group Inc said on Friday it was working with authorities to investigate if the smokeless tobacco products it recalled last week were tampered with.

The company had said it recalled some smokeless tobacco products after eight consumers complained that they found some sharp metal objects in certain cans.

Source: Yahoo! News/Reuters – 03 February 2017
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