“Ongoing nervousness” about the use of e-cigarettes in stop-smoking services can be a “significant” barrier to people finding support, research revealed during “Stoptober” shows. New research by the University of Exeter and University of Melbourne, funded by Cancer Research UK, suggests stop smoking services which are e-cigarette friendly should advertise this more openly, and says greater use of e-cigarettes has the potential to make considerable impact in helping people give up smoking.
England has led the way internationally by proposing that stop smoking services become ‘e-cigarette friendly’, but many services fail to advertise this and consequently smokers, particularly those in deprived groups, may miss out on valuable behavioural support that may make the difference between success and failure in quitting.
The research shows strong leadership from organisations such as Public Health England has made a difference in changing attitudes. But the nervousness among some working in public health services and local councils about the use of e-cigarettes is preventing the widespread establishment of stop smoking services which support vapers.
As part of the study, published in the journal Harm Reduction, academics interviewed staff from eight different stop smoking services in the South-West of England. They found many services are
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