For the first time, the annual Stoptober campaign in England has backed e-cigarettes as a key way to get people to quit smoking. In the past, health experts have avoided explicitly promoting e-cigarettes as a cessation tool, but now the campaign will feature vaping in Tv adverts for the first time.
Although e-cigarettes are not yet officially prescribed on the NHS, health professionals are encouraged to advise smokers to use them as an alternative to smoking. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has released new draft guidance to help encourage smokers to quit, stating that patients should be informed by their health professional that e-cigarettes have been found useful by some smokers.
The government’s deputy chief medical officer Prof Gina Radford said e-cigarettes were playing an important role and, as they had “95% less harmful products” in them than normal cigarettes, it was only right that they were promoted during Stoptober.
Although new research suggests that record numbers of smokers are stopping successfully, Prof Radford explained that “The battle against smoking is far from over – it is still the country’s biggest killer, causing 79,000 deaths a year. And for every death, another 20 smokers are suffering smoking-related disease.”
Find out more about Stoptober and watch the new Stoptober 2017 TV advert below.