Today, the ONS has released its report on smoking and e-cigarette use in 2018. It has revealed that 6.3% of all over 16s in the UK in 2018 were e-cigarette users, otherwise known as vapers. This breaks down as 7.7% of men and 5% of women; an increase of 0.8% from 2017. 52.8% of respondents said that they use e-cigarettes as an aid to stop smoking, an increase from 48.8% and a five-year high. This comes as the survey reveals that 92.2% of vapers had started smoking before trying an e-cigarette.
Simon Manthorpe, CEO of EOS Scientific, commented on the announcement. “A £6bn strain on the NHS and being the main cause of 80-90% of small cell and non-small cell lung cancers demonstrate the cost of smoking in our society. Furthermore, an ever-increasing body of research continues to serve as a reminder to the nation of the dangers of smoking on our and our loved one’s health. Solutions such as vaping can relieve both the financial strain of tobacco addiction, but can also serve as an aid to help rid the nation of one of our deadliest vices.
This report demonstrates how many people appear to be benefiting from using e-cigarettes as a quitting aid. The downward trend of smoking is a positive one, and we hope that greater education and support around using e-cigarettes responsibly is given to help smokers quit for good.”
The report also states that, currently, 14.7% of the over 18 population of the 2018 population were smokers, a drop from 15.1% in 2017 and 20.2% in 2011. This demonstrates that more people are moving away from cigarettes towards e-cigarettes as an aid to help them stop smoking.
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.