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.
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.
- 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.