ASH Daily News for 10 January 2019


  • Duncan Selbie: Public health leadership ‘rationale’ unchanged
  • Black Country Partnership NHS Foundation Trust goes smokefree
  • Illegal cigarettes seized from shop in Walsall


  • Ireland: Crackdown on ‘shadow economy’ sees doubling in illegal cigarette seizures



Duncan Selbie: Public health leadership ‘rationale’ unchanged

The “rationale” for councils to lead on public health remains unchanged, Duncan Selbie, Chief Executive of Public Health England, has said. This is despite a suggestion in the NHS Long Term Plan that councils’ role could be diminished.

The NHS Long Term Plan said the Government and the health service will “consider whether there is a stronger role for the NHS in commissioning sexual health services, health visitors, and school nurses, and what best future commissioning arrangements might therefore be”. However, writing in response to the plan, Mr Selbie said this referred to a joint review between local government and the NHS which would aim to achieve better joined-up working on public health. He added: “This joint review between the NHS and local government will ensure that we have the best possible join-up between them, with no predetermined outcome.”

Mr Selbie also said a new prevention-focused NHS, as outlined in the Long Term Plan, must work alongside an “adequately funded” local government. “Wider determinants, including income, are even more important because to stay healthy people need homes, good jobs and friends, and an environment that makes healthy choices possible” he said. “Therefore, it is vital for the NHS, with its new focus on prevention, to work alongside an adequately funded and appropriately resourced local government.”

Source: Local Government Chronicle, 9 January 2019

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Black Country Partnership NHS Foundation Trust goes smokefree

The Black Country Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, which specialises in mental health, learning disability and community healthcare services, went smokefree on the 1st January 2019. The new policy will prohibit smoking by staff, patients and visitors on all of the Trust’s grounds.

Deputy Director of Nursing Judy McDonald said: “Our smokefree journey has evolved over the past year, and we are proud that the various strategies we have implemented are now coming to fruition…[the Trust] has a duty of care to support others in achieving a healthy lifestyle, and provide a close relationship of care, confidence and communication to those facing the challenges of quitting smoking and exposure to second-hand smoke…It is shocking that people with mental health conditions die on average 10 to 20 years earlier than the rest of our population and smoking is the largest single cause of this gap.”

“We continue to offer training to staff to ensure they are equipped to support each other, and patients, to stop smoking and indeed anyone who wishes to stop smoking can receive support” she said.

Source: Express and Star, 7 January 2019

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Illegal cigarettes seized from shop in Walsall

23,000 cigarettes, and a large quantity of rolling-tobacco, have been seized from a shop in Darlaston, Walsall.

A spokesman for the trading standards team declined to give any further information, as the investigation is still ongoing.

Source: Birmingham Live, 7 January 2019

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Ireland: Crackdown on ‘shadow economy’ sees doubling in illegal cigarette seizures

The number of illegal cigarettes seized by Ireland’s Revenue last year almost doubled to 68 million as the State’s tax authority continued a crackdown on the “shadow economy”. Publishing results for 2018, Revenue chairman Niall Cody said that the organisation continued to “target and disrupt” the shadow economy, seizing illegal cigarettes, tobacco and drugs worth a total of €75.7 million.

The figures show that last year Revenue seized 67.8 million contraband cigarettes, almost twice the 34.2 million that its officials confiscated in 2017. “This included 23.5 million cigarettes, with an estimated potential loss to the exchequer of €37.5 million, discovered in March 2018 in a counterfeit cigarette factory,” Mr Cody said.

A report for Revenue and the Health Service Executive’s National Tobacco Control Office found that 13% of the cigarettes smoked in the Republic were illegal in 2017, compared to 10% the previous year.

Source: Irish Times, 4 January 2019

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