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Public Health England U-turn on Electronic Cigarettes (E-cig)

Smoke / Vapour
E - Cig Report
Smoke / Vapour
E – Cig Report

So, this month (August 2015) Public Health England has released a report de-bunking a couple of myths regarding e-cigs.

The headlines I take from the report are the consolidation of two opinions. One, that e-cigs are vastly less hazardous to health than regular cigarettes. Further, that there is no evidence that ‘vaping’ is a ‘gateway’ to Smoking.

A ‘relative harm’ chart published in European Addiction Research on http://ecita.org.uk/ (19/08/2015) showed a stark difference between ‘Vaping’ and ‘Smoking’




  1. Cigarettes 99.6
  2. Small Cigars 66.9
  3. Pipes 22.2
  4. Cigars 15.9
  5. E-Cigarettes 3.4
  6. Nasal Spray 1.6
  7. Oral Products 1.2
  8. Patches1.0

This chart is cited as accounting for mortality, morbidity economic and social cost.

In-so-far as many headlines are stating that PHE (Public Health England) have suggested making e-cigs available on prescription, this doesn’t seem to be the case. However, as currently no e-cigs are approved under MEDICAL regulations. I’d say this shouldn’t be confused with the idea that e-cigs are un-regulated. They ARE regulated both as a consumer product and that of an electrical device.

E-cigs are a growth industry whilst smoking is on the decline. A massive factor in this seems to be cost. For a £250pcm smoking habit the equivalent ‘vaping’ would be approximately £30pcm (not including hardware)

It seems like 2016’s proposed Article 20 of the EU’s Tobacco Products Directive which aims to further regulate Electronic Cigarettes / Vaporising devices. Which on the surface seems like a good thing yes? Well, maybe. But, this will effectively stifle advertising and predictable increase prices in line of further costs associated with heavier regulation. In short. Reducing the cost viability and incentive to switch from cigarettes to e-cigs. (Face-palm)

So, wrapping up. No prescription e-cigs as yet. But, Public Health England have shown evidence that e-cigs are a much better alternative than smoking.