ASH Daily News for 17 February 2017



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  • Pressure on smokers and obese could steer patients into private healthcare
  • Doncaster employers asked to help with stop smoking campaign
  • Knee and hip replacement surgery ‘almost twice as likely to fail in smokers’
  • Smokers’ memories could help them quit
  • India: Health group calls for higher taxes on bidi products

Pressure on smokers and obese could steer patients into private healthcare

An investigation into the Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) of Clinical Commissioning Groups by the I newspaper shows that many of the 44 STPs examined include plans to require people to stop smoking or obese patients to lose weight before receiving planned surgery.  Some critics believe the prolonged wait could prompt patients to seek private healthcare.

Chris Moulton, vice-president of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine, argues that preventative medicine is “the morally and medically correct thing to do” but says it won’t solve the NHS’s financial crisis.

Source: Inews – 16 February 2017
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Doncaster employers asked to help with stop smoking campaign

Doncaster Chamber of Commerce is calling on local businesses to work with Yorkshire Smokefree and develop a workplace smoking policy.  Chief executive Dan Fell said helping staff to stop smoking reduces the potential for breaches of workplace smoking regulations.

The service is run by South West Yorkshire NHS Foundation Trust on behalf of a number of local authorities including Doncaster. Nationally, smokers are 33 per cent more likely to miss work than non-smokers, and are absent for an average 2.7 extra days per year than non-smokers.

Source: Doncaster Free Press – 16 February 2017
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Knee and hip replacement surgery ‘almost twice as likely to fail in smokers’

People who smoke are less likely to have successful knee and hip surgery according to new research.   Those who use cigarettes are at an increased risk of requiring repeat procedures because of infections.

Smoking has previously been linked to prolonged healing time and a greater risk of complications.

The latest findings published in The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery suggest therapy may be needed for all patients considering joint replacements to encourage them to quit smoking.
Dr Matthew Austin, of Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, said: “Our results found current smokers had a significantly higher rate of septic reoperation compared with non smokers.  Furthermore, each additional ‘pack year’ significantly contributed to total reoperations.”

See also:
– Smoking Increases the Rate of Reoperation for Infection within 90 Days After Primary Total Joint Arthroplasty, Ovid Insights

Source:  Daily Express – 16 February 2017
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Smokers’ memories could help them quit
A study has challenged the view that negative messaging scares smokers into quitting and suggests instead that positive imagery can change attitudes and behaviour.
Researchers at Michigan State University noted that advertisers often use nostalgia-evoking messages to promote consumer products, and that tactic could be just as effective in encouraging healthy behaviours.

Maria Lapinski, professor in the Department of Communication, said:
“Our study, which to our knowledge is first of its kind, shows promise for using nostalgic messages to promote pro-social behaviors. We know that policy and environmental changes have an influence on smoking and this study indicates persuasive messages can influence smoking attitudes.”

Source:  Medical Xpress – 16 February 2017
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India: Health group calls for higher taxes on bidi products

Public health groups in India have called on the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley to ensure that all tobacco products, especially bidis, are taxed at uniformly high rates under the new tax framework. The public group says that the total tax burden currently is at 53 per cent, 19.5 per cent and 56 per cent respectively for cigarettes, bidis and smokeless tobacco in India. It is much lower than the level recommended by the WHO, which stands at 75 per cent of the tobacco retail price.

Source:  Investment Guru India – 17 February 2017
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