ASH Daily News for 28 June 2019


  • NHSE sets long-term plan priorities
  • UK illicit tobacco market declines, official data suggests
  • ASH Wales welcomes 2% fall in the number of smokers in Wales

Links of the week

  • ASH resource: Costs of smoking to social housing: The quitting dividend for tenants and landlords
  • Launch of the North East Vaping Standard


NHSE sets long-term plan priorities

NHS England has published the Long Term Plan (LTP) Implementation Framework expanding on the priorities and commitments set out in the LTP. NHS England has split its priorities between critical foundations the service must deliver under nationally defined timings and requirements, and other commitments where areas will have substantial freedoms.

The framework has few additional details, but it is understood specific LTP programmes are likely to issue their own guidance separately in coming weeks. The framework does, however, include indicative allocations for various workstreams, worth £3.3bn by 2023-24.

Critical foundations which can expect additional detail and expectations of progress in the early years of implementation include community services and primary care, urgent and emergency care, cancer and mental health.
In a range of other areas, the document says specific timelines are not being set yet and there will be more flexibility. These include; prevention; maternity and neonatal services; children and young people; cardiovascular disease; stroke care; diabetes; and respiratory disease among others.

The guidance tells all areas to produce a strategy delivery plan and supporting technical material for initial submission in September. They should agree their plans by mid November 2019 and publish them shortly thereafter.

Source: Health Service Journal, 27 June 2019

NHS Long Term Plan Implementation Framework

NHS Long Term Plan Implementation Framework: system support offer

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UK illicit tobacco market declines, official data suggests

The total tobacco tax gap – the difference between the amount of tax that should have been paid to HMRC on tobacco products and what was actually paid – fell to £1.8bn in 2017-18, down from 2.4bn in 2016/17, according to HMRC’s Measuring Tax Gaps data.

The figures for 2017/18 equate to an estimated total loss of £1.4bn in tobacco duties and a further £0.4bn in VAT. The cigarette illicit market share was estimated to account for 9% in 2017/18 – a fall from 15% in 2016/17. This resulted in an estimated loss of £0.8bn in duty and a further £0.2bn in VAT, giving a total loss of £1bn, down from 1.7bn in 2016/17 – in line with falling UK duty-paid cigarette consumption.

UK duty-paid cigarette consumption has declined steadily from 49.5 billion cigarettes in 2005/06 to 27.5 billion cigarettes in 2017/18. However, the UK hand-rolling tobacco illicit market share grew to account for an estimated 32% in 2017/18, up from 27% in 2016/17.

The figures come as retailers across the UK continue to navigate the application process for their Track and Trace codes, which form part of the new legislation to crack down on the illicit tobacco trade. The first Track and Trace-compliant tobacco packs, which boast an array of new security features, are expected to enter the wholesale channel by the end of this month.

Source: Convenience store, 20 June 2019

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ASH Wales welcomes 2% fall in the number of smokers in Wales

ASH Wales has welcomed the figures from the latest National Survey for Wales that smoking prevalence in the country has dropped from 19% to 17%. However, it warns that with over 450,000 people in Wales continuing to smoke, and prevalence highest in the country’s most deprived communities, reducing smoking should remain a major public health priority.

According to the figures, 17% of adults in Wales now smoke, 18% of men and 16% of women. Smoking rates are highest in Wales’ poorest communities with 21% of adults smoking in the most deprived areas, a fall of 7% since 2017-18. Smoking prevalence remains at 13% in the least deprived areas.

Overall the figures mean the Welsh Government is now 1% off its target to reduce smoking prevalence to 16% of the population by 2020. The decrease follows a year of continued investment in national stop smoking services in Wales, robust tobacco control measures and the introduction of smokefree spaces.

Suzanne Cass, CEO of ASH Wales, said she hoped the results reflect a shift in attitudes towards smoking in Wales: “Smoking is responsible for thousands of deaths in Wales every year, at a huge cost to the country’s NHS, not to mention the devastating impact on families. We are encouraged to hear smoking rates have fallen and believe this is due to a combination of factors including smoking bans, smoke free spaces and the rise in the popularity of e-cigarettes as a smoking substitute.”

She went on to say however, that despite the decline in smoking rates there is still much work to be done in tackling smoking prevalence, particularly among the most deprived areas of Wales.

“We cannot afford to be complacent when it comes to tobacco control. Great progress has been made however, smoking remains a major cause of health inequalities, poverty and death in Wales, with prevalence still highest in our most deprived communities.”

Source: Wales247, 28 June 2019

See also:
National Survey for Wales: April 2018 to March 2019

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Links of the week

ASH resource: Costs of smoking to social housing: The quitting dividend for tenants and landlords

Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) has published a new report which explores the financial impact of smoking on social housing landlords and tenants. The report can be accessed here.

The report is accompanied by a cost calculator which allows housing providers to estimate the number of households in their local area or housing stock who would need to be supported to quit in order to balance their total rental arrears. The calculator can be accessed here.

View resources

Launch of the North East Vaping Standard

The North East Smokefree NHS and Treating Tobacco Dependency Taskforce has provided five key recommendations to NHS Trusts aiming to create a consistent position around vaping and a harm reduction approach to e-cigarettes and their use within NHS Trust grounds. This is part of the Taskforce’s work to implement National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidance on smoking in Acute NHS services by April 2020.

View the Standard here and the press release from Fresh here.