Saturday, 21 August 2010

Smokers paid to quit in Perth, Scotland, in spite of dismal success rates in Dundee

More chaos in the world of smoking cessation as Perth becomes the next place where smokers will be paid to stop smoking.

To its credit, the Courier points out that a very low proportion of Dundee smokers have succeeded in quitting in spite of an investment of £530,000. It claims that 'fewer than one in ten are known to have quit for good' - the only surprising thing about this is seeing it in mainstream news media.

Chemist & Druggist have a view here, acknowledging that the success of cessation schemes is low but suggesting that paying pregnant smokers to quit may get better results. This was (of course) covered in a session at the 2010 UK National Smoking Cessation conference, by Linda Bauld of the UK Centre for Tobacco Control Studies, a body with publicly declared conflicts of interest. It is quite phenomenal that a drug that is known to work in a very low number of cases is supported not only with publicly paid prescription charges but also with funds to encourage people to make use of it. Academics whose careers depend on promoting smoking cessation medication, and those who profit directly from the sale of such treatments, seem able to do both without arousing public ire.

Last word to Johann Hari, who comments in an unrelated piece:
The Cranfield School of Management studied 170 companies who had used management consultants, and it discovered just 36 percent of them were happy with the outcome - while two thirds judged them to be useless or harmful. A medicine with that failure-rate would be taken off the shelves. [my emphasis!]
I wonder if he has ever studied the issue of smoking cessation medication?

1 comment:

buy electronic cigarette said...

How can you be sure that what he did was life changing? It's only because of the money and not for the real purpose, which is to completely quit for good health.