ASH Daily News for 24 July 2018



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UK

  • Wales: Young people in Gwynedd stamp out smoking
  • West Midlands: Sandwell council set to cut funding for stop smoking programme
  • Opinion: UK faces a vaping dilemma as e-cigarettes puff up the glamour
  • Opinion: Beware tobacco firm’s Trojan horse

International

  • Europe: Clouds produced by e-cigarettes breakdown within seconds
  • India: Take steps to prevent tobacco use on site, schools directed

UK

Wales: Young people in Gwynedd stamp out smoking

Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has shown that the percentage of Gwynedd’s population who have never smoked has risen by 35% since 2011, with more and more 18 to 24-year-olds choosing not to smoke.

Nationally this age group has had the biggest drop in smoking. Last year across Britain, 17.8% of 18 to 24-year-olds said they were current smokers, compared with 2011 when more than a quarter smoked.

Deborah Arnott, chief executive of Action on Smoking and Health, put this reduction down to banning tobacco advertising, stating “The brightly coloured pack displays we used to have in shops disappeared completely in 2015 and the packs they do see nowadays are a sludgy green colour, with large picture warnings.”

Source: Cambrian News, 23 July 2018

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West Midlands: Sandwell council set to cut funding for stop smoking programme

On Wednesday the 25th of July Sandwell councillors are to discuss the possibility of cutting the stop smoking programme by £360,000, following a reduction in smokers from nearly 23% to 19% of adults in five years, and budget cutbacks.

Councillor Elaine Costigan, cabinet member for public health and protection, said smoking cessation is still a key priority for Sandwell. She stated, “Our budgets are under pressure due to the effects of government cuts but our expenditure on our work in this area will actually be similar to previous years because there has been under-spending in the past…The level of smoking in Sandwell remains significantly higher than the regional and national averages.”

She added: “Our new budget will be a better fit for this service, which will continue to target high prevalence of smoking in ‘hard to reach’ groups. We are also developing innovative ways of delivering stop smoking services through a self-help digital system and helping smokers to access services locally.”

Source: Ludlow & Tenbury Wells Advertiser, 23 July 2018

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Opinion: UK faces a vaping dilemma as e-cigarettes puff up the glamour

Linda Bauld, professor of health policy at the University of Stirling and deputy director of the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies, examines the introduction of the e-cigarette Juul in the UK.

“Juul, the US’s most successful e-cigarette brand, launched in the UK last week. Though aimed at smokers looking to quit, Juul has proved very attractive to teenagers in the US. This has helped to prompt an international debate over whether the benefits of vaping for adult smokers outweigh the potential risks to young people who might otherwise not use a nicotine product.

E-cigarette use is supported by British public health agencies because research suggests these products are substantially less harmful than combustible tobacco. But some critics argue that youth access to Juul and other e-cigarettes should be prohibited. Before we succumb to fears that this new product will lead to widespread teen addiction, it is important to consider the context.

E-cigarettes are regulated differently in the UK and in the US. In the US, advertising of tobacco alternatives is widespread, whist in the UK, almost all forms of e-cigarette marketing are prohibited. A further difference is the nicotine content. Juul is sold with up to 50mg/ml nicotine in the US, whereas EU regulation limits it to 20mg/ml for all vaping products. Juul devices sold in the UK will have to comply with this limit, and this lower level of nicotine is likely to make the products less addictive.

Surveys have been tracking e-cigarette uptake in UK teenagers for years. One recent study we conducted pooled results from five surveys in 2016, involving more than 60,000 young people. It found that, although experimentation with existing e-cigarette models was not uncommon, regular vaping was almost entirely confined to young people who already smoked. In fact rates of regular use of e-cigarettes in non-smoking youth were less than 1%.”

Source: Financial Times, 24 July 2018

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Opinion: Beware tobacco firm’s Trojan horse

Sandra Mullin (Senior vice-president, policy, advocacy and communication, Vital Strategies) claims Philip Morris’s overture to the NHS is part of a strategy to undermine tobacco control.

“Philip Morris International’s proposition to NHS bodies is not just a PR stunt – it’s part of a what looks like a strategy to undermine tobacco control, as leaked company papers seem to show.

Globally, PMI appears to be using e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products and its Foundation for a Smoke-Free World as Trojan horses in a strategy to drive a policy agenda that will suit its own business needs.

In our view, PMI is desperate to claim it is the critical element in reducing the harm caused by its own products and will no doubt use any link to the NHS to further its lobbying and marketing. Enabling it to co-opt the NHS would be a betrayal of everything the health service stands for.”

Source: Guardian, 22 July 2018

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International

Europe: Clouds produced by e-cigarettes breakdown within seconds

A new study comparing vaping and smoking has found vaping has less of an impact on the surrounding air. While particles from cigarette smoke linger in the air for up to 45 minutes, researchers found that those stemming from e-cigarette products evaporate within seconds, even indoors. Even in the ‘worst case scenario,’ where there was no ventilation, the study found the particle count quickly returned to background levels.

Fontem Ventures, which is part of Imperial Brands, produced this research in collaboration with Kaunas University of Technology in Lithuania and the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology, ETH Zurich.

See also:
Nicotine & Tobacco Research, Characterization of the Spatial and Temporal Dispersion Differences Between Exhaled E-Cigarette Mist and Cigarette Smoke

Source: Mail on Sunday, 23 July 2018

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India: Take steps to prevent tobacco use on site, schools directed

The Delhi Government has issued guidelines to all schools in the capital requiring them to become “tobacco-free zones.”

The schools have been asked to nominate a health scheme officer to maintain their buildings as tobacco-free zones. “Tobacco-free zone” boards will have to be displayed at prominent places in school premises and “no smoking” signage boards will have to be displayed.

The schools have also been asked to give written notice to authorities if any tobacco product is sold within 100 meters of the school premises.

Source: The Pioneer, 24 July 2018

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