Vaping goes mainstream in England
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Vaping goes mainstream in England

October 19, 2017

In embracing electronic cigarettes for the first time, England’s ‘Stoptober’ campaign is signaling that vaping is the key to getting people to quit smoking, according to a story by Nick Triggle for BBC Online.

Launched in 2012 and held during October annually ever since, Stoptober is a 28-day stop-smoking campaign by Public Health England (PHE) that encourages and supports smokers across England to quit their habit.

This year, for the first time, the government’s Stoptober campaign will feature vaping in its television information slots.

The decision to feature vaping was made after e-cigarettes proved to be the most popular tool for quitting during last year’s campaign.

Some 53 percent of people used them, helping push the numbers of people taking part in Stoptober since its launch to more than 1.5 million.

In welcoming the campaign development, a spokesperson for the UK Vaping Industry Association said in a written statement that PHE’s commitment to encourage smokers to switch to vaping in Stoptober was hugely significant to the nation’s health.

‘The government’s Tobacco Control Plan set out their intentions to promote vaping as a viable alternative to smoking and it is encouraging to see that this was more than just warm words,’ the spokesperson said.

‘It feels that at last the tide is beginning to turn; the UK is leading the way on vaping as an effective tool to reduce and stop smoking related disease.

‘As an industry, we have consistently called for recognition of the public health potential of vaping on the back of mounting evidence from respected organisations such as Public Health England, Cancer Research UK, the Royal College of Physicians.

‘The Scottish health authorities also seem to be following the same logic.  We call on the Welsh Government to make the same commitment, which was notably absent from their recent Tobacco Control Strategy.’

Meanwhile, Triggle reported that whereas e-cigarettes were not yet officially prescribed on the National Health Service, doctors and other health professionals were being encouraged to advise smokers who wanted to use them that they were a ‘better alternative to smoking’.

Government experts behind the Stoptober campaign had been encouraged by newly released research suggesting record numbers of quit attempts were proving successful.

University College London researchers had found 20 percent of attempts were successful in the first six months of 2017, compared with an average of 16 percent during the previous 10 years.

Triggle’s full report is at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-41339790.

Category: Breaking News

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