NHS in North East will promote vaping to smokers

North East healthcare professionals will recommend vaping to patients as an alternative to smoking going forward.

By faye.dixon
Tuesday, 25 June, 2019, 16:30
The Vaping Standard recognises that smoking is not a lifestyle choice but is a chronic relapsing long term condition and within the NHS should be treated as such.

An NHS anti-smoking group has provided recommendations for NHS Trusts to adopt a harm reduction approach to e-cigarettes. Dr Tony Branson, clinical lead for the Northern Cancer Alliance, said: “With e-cigarettes there is no smoke, no tar and no carbon monoxide. E-cigarettes are now proving more popular and it important that we get across to patients the short-term and longer-term health benefits from quitting smoking tobacco.”

What are the recommendations?

- Health Care Professionals should routinely discuss smoking with patients, including risks of continuing to smoke, and be open to e-cigarette use in patients.

- Patients should be advised that e-cigarettes are deemed to be substantially less harmful than smoking and switching completely from tobacco to e-cigarettes will substantially reduce health risks.

- Using e-cigarettes without stopping smoking does not provide health benefits; anyone who is using both should be strongly encouraged to stop smoking tobacco.

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- E-cigarette use does not meet the definition of smoking and there is no evidence of harm from exposure to second hand Vape.

- E-cigarettes are almost exclusively used by smokers and ex-smokers to help smokers stop smoking and stay smoke free. Vapers should not be required to use the same space as smokers.

- There are no known additional specific risks to charging e-cigarettes.

- Patients should be advised that ‘Heat-not-Burn’ products do contain tobacco, so are not recommended and use of these products should not be allowed on NHS premises and grounds.