ASH Daily News for 26 July 2018



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UK

  • NHS ‘Stop Smoking’ ads working in Essex

International

  • BAT to launch heated tobacco in US
  • USA: Study finds smokers confused about benefits of lung cancer screenings
  • Indonesia: Tobacco use becoming part of the ‘rite of passage’ for some rural boys

Parliamentary Activity

  • Parliamentary Question

UK

NHS ‘Stop Smoking’ ads working in Essex

Half of young people surveyed in Essex say they’ve been put off taking up smoking by national NHS ‘Stop Smoking adverts’ on TV. The YEAH!3 report, by Healthwatch Essex, found the adverts have discouraged young people from ever taking up smoking, many said that constant reminders of the dangers prevented them from starting. The visual impact of warnings on cigarette packets was also a common factor reported to discourage young people from smoking.

Dr David Sollis, CEO of Healthwatch Essex, said: “It is very encouraging to hear that some of the adverts currently being used by the NHS are proving successful in deterring young people from smoking. That was a very clear message that came out of the report, which is really positive. It seems, for young people who already smoke, being warned of the long-term dangers is not always the strongest incentive to quit. In fact, we found that tailoring smoking-cessation information to include more immediate side effects and consequences may benefit this group more.”

Source: Heart, 26 July 2018

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International

BAT to launch heated tobacco in US

British American Tobacco has said it received a “substantial equivalence” clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for an new version of its carbon-tipped tobacco heating product called Eclipse.

This means the product can be legally marketed in the US and BAT said it would test launch Eclipse in the United States within the next 12 months.

Source: Reuters, 26 July 2018

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USA: Study finds smokers confused about benefits of lung cancer screenings

A study by the VA Center of Innovation for Veteran-Centered and Value-Driven Care in Seattle has found that patients hold misconceptions around the benefits and limitations of lung cancer screenings. Regular cancer screenings can lower chance of death from lung cancer due to earlier detection expanding treatment options, but cannot reduce the risk of developing lung cancer for people who smoke.

To test patients’ actual knowledge about lung cancer, the researchers surveyed 83 smokers after their lungs were screened, with a series of questions. Nearly half (47%) answered the question “For people over age 55 who are current smokers, which is more likely to prevent the most premature deaths – lung cancer screening or quitting smoking?” incorrectly. This means nearly half of patients believed lung cancer screenings were at least as good as quitting smoking as a way of protecting against death.

See also: Annals of the American Thoracic Society, Smokers’ Inaccurate Beliefs about the Benefits of Lung Cancer Screening

Source: Scienmag, 26 July 2018

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Indonesia: Tobacco use becoming part of the ‘rite of passage’ for some rural boys

Indonesia has one of the highest smoking rates in the world, with 63% of men (but just 5% of women) reported to be smokers. It’s the fifth largest tobacco market in the world, in part due it’s large, expanding, population of 260 million.

Some cultures in Indonesia regard circumcision as the mark of when a boy becomes a man and often at this time boys will receive gifts. In tobacco-producing district in Magelang, Central Java, smoking has become part of the rite of passage for boys and cigarettes are now a common gift.

The Magelang regency administration launched an intensive campaign against children smoking early this year including targeting junior high school students to explain the dangers of smoking.

Source: Jakarta Post, 26 July 2018

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Parliamentary Activity

Parliamentary Question

Martyn Day Scottish National Party, Linlithgow and East Falkirk
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how he plans to ensure that the UK tobacco product track and trace system as required by Article 8 of the WHO FCTC Protocol to Eliminate the Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products will be fully independent from the tobacco industry.

Robert Jenrick The Exchequer Secretary
The government is committed to meeting the requirements for independence from the tobacco industry as per Article 8 of the WHO FCTC Protocol to Eliminate the Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products.

The track and trace system will be implemented under the EU Tobacco Products Directive. The implementing legislation for the Directive specifies strict and comprehensive criteria by which independence from the tobacco industry is determined. Providers of the track and trace system will need to demonstrate to HM Revenue & Customs that they satisfy this criteria both before and during the period they provide the services required as a condition of holding the respective contracts.

Source: Hansard, 26 July 2018

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