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Hiding in plain sight: Treating tobacco dependency in the NHS – New report from RCP


iPiP welcomes a new Royal College of Physicians new report – Hiding in plain sight: Treating tobacco dependency in the NHS. It is a comprehensive analysis of the impact of smoking on the NHS and includes detailed recommendations for steps the NHS should take to address this impact. The report includes new findings on:

  • The cost of smoking to the NHS – broken down by many different diseases and conditions
  • Impact on smoking on child health, mental health and pregnancy
  • Impact of NHS employees smoking

The report calls for much greater action within the NHS to tackle smoking. Specifically that:

  • Stop smoking interventions should be provided by the NHS to complement the services being delivered by local authorities
  • Smokers should be referred to support on an opt-out basis
  • Improvements should be made to the way smoking status is recorded in the NHS
  • Training in smoking cessation should be more widespread among health professionals with improvements made to undergraduate curricula
  • NHS facilities should continue to move to be smokefree,
  • Stop smoking medications should be routinely prescribed and e-cigarettes should be available on hospital premises.

Hiding in plain sight: Treating tobacco dependency in the NHS demonstrates that clinicians working in almost all areas of medicine will see their patient’s problems improved by quitting smoking, and that systematic intervention is a cost-effective means of both improving health and reducing demand on NHS services. Smoking cessation is not just about prevention. For many diseases, smoking cessation represents effective treatment.

It calls on doctors to recognise that recognising and treating tobacco dependence as their business, and to incorporate smoking cessation as a systematic and opt-out component of all NHS services, delivered in smoke-free settings.

The RCP press release and a link to the full report can be found here: https://www.rcplondon.ac.uk/news/innovation-medicine-2018-providing-smoking-cessation-patients-hospitals-will-save-lives-and

iPiP has been working with various organisations to help them deliver a more effective ‘Smokefree NHS’. For more information on this and to find out how we could help you contact us.

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