Sunday 19 May 2024
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Councils research vaping use among young people

A research campaign costing £75,000 will take place in Nottingham so the city council can better understand the “vaping behaviours of young people”.

The research will be joint-funded by the public health departments at Nottingham City Council and Nottinghamshire County Council, which have together formed a ‘Smoking and Tobacco Strategic Alliance’.

The city council has pledged £75,000 to the research campaign, which will last 12 months.

Council documents say that, while smoking rates in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire have been “reducing steadily”, E-cigarette use and vaping has been rising among young people in particular.

There is an adult smoking habit rate of 16.5 per cent in the city and 13.3 per cent in the county.

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This is higher than the national average of 13 per cent and smoking remains “one of the largest causes of ill-health and early death in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire”.

And, according to the Labour-run authority, an Action on Smoking and Health survey in 2022 found 8.6 per cent of 11 to 18-year-olds were occasionally or regularly vaping, compared with 4 per cent in 2021 and 4.8 per cent in 2020.

In documents, the council says: “Locally, E-cigarettes are an evolving issue and have a place in efforts to address the harms caused by smoking and tobacco use.

“It is important that we have a shared understanding of their role and share consistent messages to all age groups.

“Everyone has a different perception of smoke-free so we want to understand from the citizens of city and county what smoke-free means to them and would this be something they would get behind and help create a smoke-free city and county.”

The provider of the campaign will be Gateshead-based research firm Bluegrass Research Limited.

It will help the council develop a good understanding of why people smoke and vape in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire and increase awareness in young people of the health impacts of using e-cigarettes.

“Not having a behavioural insight and research campaign will lead to lack of local data on vaping behaviours and smoke-free perceptions and reduce our ability to respond to the need of the population,” council documents add.

“A do-nothing approach would not provide the opportunity for new learning on how the local needs of the population are changing.”

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