ASH Daily News for 13 December 2016



  • North East smokers urged to quit to save money over Christmas
  • Channel Islands: Smokers could have duty free cigarettes allowance cut
  • China: Smoking ban faces opposition
  • Tobacco control has saved more than 20 million lives
  • USA, Ohio: Columbus raises the tobacco buying age to 21
  • USA: Study shows effectiveness of testimonial warning labels on tobacco products
  • Research: A framework for evaluating the public health impact of e-cigarettes and other vaporized nicotine products

North East smokers urged to quit to save money over Christmas

Smokers across the North East are being encouraged to quit smoking in the run-up to Christmas to improve their health and save money over the festive period.

Tobacco control campaigners Fresh are spearheading the campaign, which will run into the New Year, and have released figures showing just how much money people could save from quitting smoking: for example £47 could be saved in the first week after someone quits.

Alisa Rutter, Director of Fresh said: “Christmas is a time when a lot of people are out letting their hair down and enjoying themselves. However, the excesses of the festive season can lead to some people smoking more and really regretting it. Most smokers would like to be able to quit and we’re urging everyone to give it another go for New Year. Every pack of tobacco cigarettes can lead to a mutation which can cause cancer, so every pack of cigarettes you don’t smoke is doing you good. There is no need for cold turkey at Christmas or the New Year. Stop smoking services can provide really effective support and products to ease the cravings. And a good starting point could be switching to an e-cig in time for the Christmas party season and avoiding that temptation to smoke.”

Source: ITV News – 12 December 2016
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Channel Islands: Smokers could have duty free cigarettes allowance cut

The States of Jersey has published a new tobacco control strategy which includes cutting residence duty free cigarette allowance and working with Guernsey to limit the amount of tobacco being moved between islands. The new strategy also aims to reduce uptake of smoking among young people.

Deputy Andrew Green, Health Minister said: “This strategy has an important focus on children and young people. This is because we know nearly all adult smokers start young. I fully support our aspiration to work towards a ‘generation of non-smokers’. This will be key to preventing the harm that tobacco causes in our community into the future.”

See also:
Tobacco Strategy 2017-2022, States of Jersey

Source: Telegraph – 10 December 2016
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China: Smoking ban faces opposition

The Chinese Government is looking to introduce a ban on smoking in indoor public places from 2017, but with an estimated 2.3 trillion cigarettes consumed across the country every day there is clear opposition.

BBC News interviews smokers on their response to the proposals.

Source: BBC News – 13 December 2016
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Tobacco control has saved more than 20 million lives

Between 2008 and 2014 more than 53 million people across 88 different countries stopped smoking due to tobacco control measures, saving more than 22 million people from smoking-related death according to new research conducted by Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Centre.

The research published in Tobacco Control, updates a landmark study from 2013 which found that tobacco control measures had saved over 7 million lives between 2007 and 2010.

This continuing analysis evaluates the mounting success of the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) by estimating deaths averted as a marker of policy impact. The WHO FCTC aims to reduce smoking by implementing evidence-based tobacco control measures.

The study highlights that many of the lives saved came between 2012 and 2014 when Russia, Bangladesh and Vietnam implemented key measures on taxation, putting health warnings on packaging and smokefree policies. The researchers further estimate that an additional 140 million lives could be saved if China, Indonesia and India implemented key policies of the WHO FCTC.

See also:
Seven years of progress in tobacco control: an evaluation of the effect of nations meeting the highest level MPOWER measures between 2007 and 2014, Tobacco Control

Source: Scienmag – 12 December 2016
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USA, Ohio: Columbus raises the tobacco buying age to 21

Columbus City Council has voted unanimously to raise the tobacco buying age to 21 in a bid to save lives and reduce uptake of smoking among young people.

The Columbus vote adds momentum to fast-growing efforts in Ohio and across the country to raise the tobacco age to 21. To date, Tobacco 21 laws have been passed by California, Hawaii and more than 200 localities including New York City and Washington DC.

Source: Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids – 12 December 2016
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USA: Study shows effectiveness of testimonial warning labels on tobacco products

Researchers at Penn Tobacco Centre of Regulatory Sciences found that warning labels featuring photos of real smokers suffering from smoking related diseases are more effective in persuading smokers to quit than the text-only labels currently in use.

The researchers showed adult smokers several varieties of warning label from three categories: text-only labels, photographic labels but not of real people, photographs of real people suffering from smoking related diseases. Participants reported their initial responses to the labels and their intentions to quit.

Participants were followed-up after 5 weeks to see if they had made a quit attempt and, if so, how successful they had been. The researchers found that pictorial warning consistently outperformed text-only labels.

Among the smokers who viewed the text-only labels, 7.4% of smokers attempted to quit in the subsequent five weeks. Those who viewed the photos of real smokers, however, had a quit attempt rate of 15.4% roughly double and were four times as likely to have been successful.

See also:
Seven years of progress in tobacco control: an evaluation of the effect of nations meeting the highest level MPOWER measures between 2007 and 2014, Tobacco Control

Source: Medical Xpress – 12 December 2016
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Research: A framework for evaluating the public health impact of e-cigarettes and other vaporised nicotine products

Vaporised nicotine products (VNPs), especially e-cigarettes, are increasingly being adopted as an alternative to combustible tobacco products. In an attempt to understand the impact they may have on public health, researchers have modelled the toxicity and, using current evidence, the probable impact on public health of these new products.

Using a systems thinking framework and decision theory the researchers considered potential pathways for current, former and never users of VNPs, then examined the potential effects of different policy approaches and the possible influence of the tobacco industry on VNP and cigarette use.

See also:
– Commentary: The potential impact of vaporized nicotine products on vulnerable subpopulations
– Commentary: A gateway to more productive research on e-cigarettes? Commentary on a comprehensive framework for evaluating public health impact
– Commentary: The need for a comprehensive framework
– Commentary: Is public health regulation the biggest factor influencing the use and uptake of vaporized nicotine products?

Source: Wiley Online Library – December 2016
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