NHS Report on E-Cigarattes

Ireland is bringing in new legistation in the next few months for the E-cig industry the wont be banning them in public places as part of this new law
the will introducing a licence for stores operating in Ireland

The report, carried out by academics for Public Health England, claimed that the controversial devices should be prescribed by doctors to help smokers quit. But what are the devices as does everyone agree?

Why is this a big deal?

Currently there are eight million smokers in the UK. If all of them switched to vaping around 75,000 lives a year could be saved, according the report’s authors.

Their findings suggest e-cigarettes are 20 times less dangerous than tobacco. This has led Public Health England to recommend that e-cigarettes should be prescribed to help smokers quit on the NHS, which currently spends £2bn a year treating smoking related diseases.

How soon will they be available?

Not that soon. GP’s and stop smoking services have welcomed the findings of the report, but as no e-cigarettes products are currently licensed for medical purposes they can’t be given out by health professionals.

However, experts hope the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency will speed up the licensing process, which would allow the product to be prescribed by the end of the year.

Isn’t anything labeled as a cigarette harmful and to be avoided?

Yes and no. Both cigarettes and E-cigarettes are harmful to your health, but the report recommends that e-cigarettes should be used by smokers as a gateway to quitting.

Both electronic and traditional cigarettes contain some toxins so are potentially harmful. However, unlike traditional cigarettes, which are filled with tobacco and tar, e-cigarettes don’t contain tobacco and (the study claims) pose no risk of nicotine poisoning when inhaled.

Why doesn’t everyone smoke E-cigarettes then?

Just under half of the population (44.8 per cent) do not realise that e-cigarettes are much less harmful than smoking, according to the report. Prof Kevin Fenton, director of health and wellbeing at Public Health England, said he believed it was important to tackle “harmful myths”.

He said, “E-cigarettes are not completely risk-free but when compared to smoking, evidence shows they carry just a fraction of the harm. The problem is people increasingly think they are at least as harmful and this may be keeping millions of smokers from quitting.”

That’s not to say that they’re not popular though, currently 2.6 million adults vape in Britain.

Does everyone support the study’s findings?

No. The Welsh Government favors curbs on vaping. It has banned smoking E-cigarettes in enclosed places such as restaurants, pubs and at work, under a law which will come into force in 2017. It says it worries the devices may re-normalise smoking and could prevent a danger to children.

The British Medical Association has also expressed concern that the widespread use of e-cigarettes could undermine existing smoking laws and make the devices attractive to children.

The World Health Organisation is also skeptical. It recommends that smokers should first be encouraged to quit smoking by using existing, approved treatments. It points to evidence which says the vapour from E-cigarettes can pose a threat to adolescents and to the fetuses of pregnant mothers who use the devices.

It’s also worth noting that many e-cigarettes are manufactured by the tobacco industry. This could mean that the NHS gives money to the same companies that created the smoking problem in the first place.


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