Advance Notice – Public Health England’s New Framework for Use of E Cigarettes in the Workplace and Public Spaces
Public Health England (PHE) have advised us that they will launch a new framework in early July to help businesses understand the safe use of e-cigarettes (vaping) in the workplace and public spaces.
2.8 million people are now regularly using e- cigarettes, the vast majority being ex-smokers using them as a safer alternative. Although the long term impacts have yet to be evaluated a detailed PHE study published last year concluded that vaping was at least 95% less harmful than cigarette smoking which is a major risk factor for many diseases ranging from the well-known associations with cancer or heart disease, to less well known health impacts such as increased risk of back pain.
The PHE framework will recommend 5 simple principles:
- Distinguishing clearly between vaping and smoking (in for example workplace policies)
- Protecting Bystanders (reducing passive exposure)
- Protecting Children and Young People (recognising the fine balance between making it easier for adults to switch from smoking to using e-cigarettes but without encouraging children to start either)
- Supporting smokers to stop – The National Institute for Clinical Excellence has confirmed the evidence base that shows smoking cessation support is effective and organisations can help their employees understand how to access such
- Promoting Compliance with Smoke Free laws and policies -especially ensuring the clear distinction between vaping and smoking
PHE have set an ambition to secure a tobacco free generation by 2025 and they describe e-cigarettes as the potential game changer to enable this