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Health Policy

Often, health policy isn't about health, it's about financial pressures. Because of this, it is worth keeping it in the spotlight.

- a Guest Post by Steve K - Following e-cigarette news at Steve K's Vaping World, I see a lot of e-cigarette related news articles. By far, the most prevalent of those articles are ones that seem biased against the great potential of electronic cigarettes. Millions of people have stopped using deadly cigarettes already on their own. In many cases these are people who have attempted to quit using the "approved" methods multiple times with little success. Smoking is the biggest cause of preventable death worldwide. Scores of smokers spontaneously quitting should be greeted as the best thing since the...
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Posted by on in Health Policy
West et al published an analysis of the NHS SSS [1], the NHS smoking cessation programme, in the BMJ, in July. http://www.bmj.com/content/347/bmj.f4921 It provides an interesting analysis of performance over the 10 years examined. The three notable factors are: 1. The paper does not mention that the costs quoted are only around 50% of the actual costs. The NHS routinely attempts to hide the drug costs associated with smoking treatments, for some reason; and since these are about equal to the NHS costs, the 'costs' published by them can be more or less doubled to get the real figure: what...
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Posted by on in Health Policy
Prof. Polosa is a pulmonologist with specialisms in airway provocation, immunology, smoking cessation and e-cigarette research. Among pulmonologists, he may be uniquely qualified to examine e-cigarette pulmonary issues. With his colleague P Caponnetto, also experienced in ecig research, he has published an opinion on e-cigarette regulation in The Lancet. Regulation of e-cigarettes: the users' perspective Riccardo Polosa, Pasquale Caponnetto www.thelancet.com/journals/lanres/article/PIIS2213-2600(13)70175-9/fulltext Overview The opinion piece is balanced though favourable to e-cigarettes. It advocates what might be termed an uprated form of consumer regulation as opposed to medical regulation. In particular, it mentions (probably for the first time) the possibility of utilising...
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At long last we may be seeing some honesty creeping into public health policy governing smoking and related areas: State pulls smoking quitline funding In the USA, Washington State is ceasing the free supply of NRTs to residents, as State and CDC support for free smoking cessation drugs there is ending. Together with France removing varenicline (Chantix) from the market, it looks as if the previously-solid official support for virtually useless and arguably dangerous pharmacotherapies is now beginning to show signs of realism creeping in. There is no reason why taxpayers should support treatments with a 95% failure rate such...
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It is becoming increasingly obvious that the Department of Health is afflicted by endemic incompetence and corruption. Here are just some of the articles (just on the BBC) from just the last few days.   @July 16th Failings probed at 'worst' hospitals: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-23315869 NHS failings 'being suppressed': http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-23309720 Neuberger: 'Panel were hugely shocked at some stories': http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-23311456 Liverpool Care Pathway 'should be phased out': http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-23302539 Family anger over man's Liverpool Care Pathway death: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-cambridgeshire-21687717 Newbury widow's anger over husband's hospital death: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-berkshire-21249127   @June 21st The rotten side of the NHS: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-22968167 NHS cover-up revealed: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-22992625 MPs to quiz CQC...
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This post is a response to an article in NHS Choices / News that discusses the MHRA's imminent decision on e-cigarette regulation. This response is too comprehensive to post to the original article comments, here: Decision over e-cigarettes and 'vaping' imminent http://www.nhs.uk/news/2013/06June/Pages/e-cigarettes-and-vaping.aspx   _________________________________________________________________ Thank you for presenting a balanced article on e-cigarettes. I agree with you that the cigarette equivalency of an ecig carto is usually overstated by vendors - most expert users put the figure at around 6 cigarettes; it is well-demonstrated that a 20-a-day smoker requires 3 to 4 cartos per day for normal equivalent consumption. The community...
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