ASH Daily News for 5 April 2019



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UK

  • New public health minister appointed
  • A £7.3m golden goodbye for the former boss of British American Tobacco
  • North East: A breath of fresh air at hospitals as smoking ban starts

International

  • US cigarette sales drop linked to people switching to vaping

Parliamentary Activity

  • Parliamentary questions

Links of the week

  • ASH Briefing on Electronic Cigarettes
  • ASH fact sheet on smoking and eye disease

UK

New public health minister appointed

Seema Kennedy, MP for South Ribble, has been made parliamentary under-secretary of state at the Department of Health and Social Care, filling the gap left by former public health minister, Steve Brine’s resignation.

This comes as part of a reshuffle following a number of ministerial resignations over Brexit.

Source: Lancashire Post, 4 April 2019

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A £7.3m golden goodbye for the former boss of British American Tobacco

The former boss of British American Tobacco (BAT), Nicandro Durante, received a £7.3million exit package as he left the company – including £56,920 relocation costs. He was given a total of 216,358 shares when he departed on Monday after being declared a ‘good leaver’.

On top of this, he will receive a pension worth about £181,700 per year, in addition to the annual £445,900 pension he already receives from a BAT subsidiary he used to work for. Durante stands to earn even more in the long-run from share awards that have yet to be calculated. He was paid £8.8million last year.

Durante has been succeeded by Jack Bowles, the firm’s former operating chief, who takes the reins at BAT as tobacco companies are facing a decline in demand for traditional cigarettes.

Source: Daily Mail, 4 April 2019

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North East: A breath of fresh air at hospitals as smoking ban starts

Smoking is now banned on all South Tees Hospital NHS Foundation Trust sites as the Trust continues to encourage people quit smoking.

The scheme will see a number of Trust sites providing nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) to smokers who have to stay in hospital overnight. Staff will also be offering advice and support to all patients attending for clinics and routine procedures, referring those who want to quit to local smoking cessation services.

Clive Peedell, consultant clinical oncologist at South Tees, said: “We want every patient to have the very best outcome and the chances of a healthy recovery greatly improve with quitting smoking. By going smokefree, we aim to bring significant benefits for the health and wellbeing of everyone who uses our hospitals and services. A key part of this will be helping patients coming for a short stay in our hospitals to abstain from smoking.”

Source: The Northern Echo, 5 April 2019

See also: NHS smokefree Pledge

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International

US cigarette sales drop linked to people switching to vaping

The number of cigarette packs sold in the US dropped sharply in March, further confirming Wall Street’s view that smokers are stubbing out Big Tobacco’s core product at an accelerating pace as they shift to vaping.

Cigarette sales volumes fell 8.8% from a year ago in the four weeks to March 23, according to Nielsen data cited by Morgan Stanley. While price increases partly offset the impact on revenues, the decline exceeded an 8% rate fall reported in February and a 5.3% decrease in 2018.

The figures are the latest sign of the pressures facing companies such as British American Tobacco and the Marlboro-maker Altria. The industry is increasingly investing in e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products, but still makes significant profits from selling regular cigarettes.

Research this year by Pamela Kaufman, a Morgan Stanley tobacco analyst, showed that the correlation between rising sales of Juul e-cigarettes and falling cigarette sales had become far clearer in recent months.

Source: Financial Times, 3 April 2019

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Parliamentary activity

Parliamentary question

PQ: Smoking in pregnancy

Asked by Rosie Cooper, West Lancashire
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps the Government is taking to better promote awareness and understanding of healthy behaviour including (a) reducing smoking during pregnancy and (b) promoting breastfeeding beyond the first weeks after birth which are integral to improving the health of children in early years.

Answered by Jackie Doyle-Price, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care
Public Health England, Health Education England and the National Centre for Smoking Cessation and Training published a range of online resources to support midwifery teams to have meaningful conversations with pregnant women about quitting smoking. These can be viewed at the following link:
https://www.e-lfh.org.uk/programmes/smoking-in-pregnancy/

The Start4Life marketing programme helps parents-to-be and families with babies and children under five to adopt healthy behaviours and with the aim of ensuring that children are given the best start in life. This includes information on quitting smoking and support during breastfeeding. The Start4Life website can be viewed at the following link:
https://www.nhs.uk/start4life/signups/new

Source: Hansard, 4 April 2019

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Links of the week

ASH Briefing on Electronic Cigarettes

ASH has published an updated briefing on e-cigarettes. The briefing examines the benefits and risks of e-cigarettes, their use and prevalence in the UK, including as a tobacco quitting aid, and the composition of the market.

View briefing

ASH fact sheet on smoking and eye disease

ASH has published a new factsheet on smoking and eye disease. The factsheet focuses on some of the major eye conditions that can be caused or exacerbated by smoking.

View factsheet