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In the year that the NHS suffers £2.7bn in cuts, 48% of Brits believe smokers are the biggest drain on healthcare

Research from the Action and Smoking Health Group has suggested that smoking costs the NHS anywhere between £2bn and £6bn per year, making it one of the leading costs for the NHS. In fact, according to brand new nationally representative research from Vapemate, 48% of UK adults believe those cigarette smokers are the single biggest burden on the healthcare system.

In the year that sees the NHS experience £2.7bn worth of cuts, these statistics cause a lot of concern, amplifying the growing public sentiment that smoking no longer has a place in modern society. And yet, many UK smokers don’t have the support in place to cut out cigarettes.

It is hard to deny the fact that cheaper alternatives, such as e-cigarettes and other NHS accredited quit-aids, would alleviate some of the financial burden on both the individual and the NHS. For those considering quitting, it would seem that almost half of Brits believe the government’s measures to dissuade cigarette smokers from picking up a packet are failing. 54% of Brits stated that the health warnings and plain packaging initiatives on tobacco products are not enough of a disincentive.

The public condemnation of smokers goes beyond the health effects of smoking cigarettes. A major report has recently revealed that cigarette production methods account for 5% of all deforestation in Asia and Africa, arguing that the tobacco industry can be more environmentally destructive that even commodities such as food crops.

By contributing more than 84 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions per year, the tobacco industry is not just producing products harmful to the health of the individual, but to the health of the planet.


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