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Numbers using NHS Stop Smoking Services in decline for the second year

Success rate remains stable with over 50 per cent giving up smoking

The number of people that set a quit date2 (586,340) through the NHS Stop Smoking Services in 2013/14 has declined by 19 per cent since 2012-13 (724,250), a new report from the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) shows.

This is the first time the number has fallen for two consecutive years since NHS Stop Smoking Services were set up in all Health Authorities in England in 2000-01. The number of people that successfully quit3 having set a quit date stood at 300,540 (51 per cent) in 2013/14.

The 60 and over age group had the highest percentage of people who successfully quit (58 per cent). The under-18 age group, in comparison, had the lowest percentage of people who successfully quit (39 per cent).

Key findings in the report Statistics on NHS Stop Smoking Services in England also show that in 2013-14:

  • 47 per cent of pregnant women setting a quit date (19,870) successfully gave up smoking. This success rate was the same as last year.
  • Of the people who set a quit date and were eligible to receive free prescriptions (332,130), half (165,960) successfully quit.
  • One-to-one4 support was used by 82 per cent (479,570) of those setting a quit date.
  • More women successfully quit (152,450) than men (148,090). However, the success rate of giving up smoking was lower amongst women at 50 per cent compared to men at 52 per cent.
  • Nine out of ten people who reported they had successfully quit smoking received pharmacotherapies5 such as Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) in 2013/14.

The number of people setting a quit date with the NHS Stop Smoking Services between 2012-13 and 2013-14 decreased in all nine regions for the second consecutive year. London had the lowest percentage decrease at 16 per cent whilst Yorkshire and the Humber had the highest percentage decrease at 24 per cent in 2013-14.

The North East reported both the highest rate of people setting a quit date (2,020 per 100,000 population) and the highest rate of people who successfully quit (932 per 100,000) in 2013-14.

The South East reported the lowest rate of people setting a quit date (1,040 per 100,000 population) and the lowest rate of people that successfully quit (567 per 100,000 population) in 2013-14.

HSCIC Chair Kingsley Manning said: "There has been a large decline in the number of people setting a quit date this year through using the NHS Stop Smoking Services. However, the fact that the success rate has remained at over 50 per cent demonstrates that this service helps patients that want to stop smoking."

Read the report here: http://www.hscic.gov.uk/pubs/sssapr13mar14

ENDS


Notes to editors

  1. The Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) was established on April 1 2013 as an Executive Non Departmental Public Body (ENDPB). It is England's trusted data source, delivering high quality information and IT systems to drive better patient services, care and outcomes. Its work includes publishing more than 220 statistical publications annually; providing a range of specialist data services; managing informatics projects and programmes and developing and assuring national systems against appropriate contractual, clinical safety and information standards.
  2. It is possible that the same individual may make more than one quit attempt during the year. In such instances, the data providers are asked to record the details of each quit attempt for collection and analysis purposes. As the data is obtained via an aggregate, rather than a record-level collection, it is not possible to ascertain the number of individuals who do in fact make multiple quit attempts in the same year. This has been the situation consistently throughout the time series.
  3. A person is counted as a "successful quitter" if he/she self-reports that they have successfully quit smoking four weeks after setting a quit date. On the basis that the clinical viewpoint tends to be that a client should not be counted as a 'failure' if he/she has smoked in the difficult first days after the quit date, the definition allows for early relapses (within the first 2 weeks after setting a quit date) provided they have not smoked at all between the end of the first two weeks and the four week follow-up.
  4. The NHS Stop Smoking Services offer support to help people quit smoking. This can include intensive support through group therapy or one-to-one support. The support is designed to be widely accessible within the local community and is provided by trained personnel, such as specialist smoking cessation advisors and trained nurses and pharmacists. These services complement the use of pharmacotherapies.
  5. Other pharmacotherapies include Varenicline (Champix) which works by reducing the smoker's craving for nicotine by binding to nicotine receptors in the brain and reducing the symptoms of withdrawal and Bupropion (Zyban) which works by suppressing the part of the brain that gives the smoker a nicotine buzz when smoking cigarettes.
  6. Counts of figures under 1,000 are exact and figures over 1,000 have been rounded to the nearest 10. Percentages have been rounded to the nearest whole number.
  7. NHS Stop Smoking Services: England, April 2013 - March 2014 presents results from the monitoring of the NHS Stop Smoking Services in England during the period April 2013 to March 2014. The report includes information on the number of quit dates set and the number of successful quit attempts at the four week follow-up. It also presents a more in depth analyses of the key measures of the service, including results for pregnant women, breakdowns by ethnic groups and type of pharmacotherapy received and regional analyses. Figures relating to the number of quit dates set and number of successful attempts have been rounded to the nearest one hundred.
  8. For media enquiries please contact media@hscic.gov.uk or 0300 303 3888.
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