Acupuncturists and Hypnotherapists in Liverpool
Merseyside is an exceptional situation in that there is, of course, a range of independent acupuncturists and hypnotherapists in Liverpool, and National Stop Smoking Centres branches (rather a lot, actually) and the National Health Service inevitably provides a smoking cessation service there, but there is also something called Fag Ends. If you live in Liverpool you may be familiar with this organisation, which I confess I was not, so I have been looking into who they are and what they do.
I was looking forward to see that Liverpool has an independent organisation providing a service to smokers, but I was disappointed. Fag Ends was originally conceived by the late musician Roy Castle, who suffered from a smoking-related disease (contracted, he believed, from passive smoking in the smoke-filled venues he played in over many years and which finally killed him). Unfortunately, what happened was that after his death the drug companies got their hands on Fag Ends. They simply will not tolerate an independent organisation helping smokers, because it might recommend therapies rather than drug products.
Fag Ends is now just an extension of the National Health Service, in that it is an outlet for the pharmaceutical companies that make nicotine replacement products and Champix.
Interesting news from the world of smoking
You can imagine that my eyebrows went up when I read this lead paragraph on EuroActiv.com:
“If the draft EU Tobacco Products Directive is approved, it will allow the continued sale of pharmaceutical products sold as aids to smoking cessation, which have been shown over and over again to be largely ineffective, says Gilbert Ross”.
Naturally, to read anyone saying such a thing about the drug products used by the National Health Service and promoted ad nauseam to smokers everywhere is refreshing. What the article is actually about, though, is smokeless tobacco, in the form of electric cigarettes but particularly snus. If you are not familiar with this latter, it is a form of tobacco that is simply held in the mouth in order to get a fix instead of smoking it. It is the smoke from tobacco, remember, that delivers so many toxins so quickly into the body.
“The European Commission has released the draft of its latest Tobacco Products Directive, expressing the overall approach to regulation of tobacco and nicotine products planned for the 500 million residents of the 27 countries of the EU.
While some parts of it may have a beneficial impact on smoking rates, albeit minor, the net effect will be, paradoxically but inevitably, damaging to Europeans’ health. The directive proposes to continue (indeed strengthen) the prior ban on Swedish smokeless tobacco, known as snus.
Worse, restrictions and regulations dealing with the relatively new devices known as e-cigarettes will effectively ban them.
In the EU, where fully one-third of the adult population still smokes, there are almost 700,000 smoking-related deaths each year. The region is number one worldwide in the devastating effects of smoking — with this exception: In Sweden, the only EU country where snus is not banned, only 16% smoke.
This fact has been validated since those statistics began to be accumulated after World War II. The Swedish male population consumes more nicotine in the form of snus than from cigarettes – and they have the lowest rate of smoking-related disease and death in Europe to show for it.
Yet when Sweden was admitted into the EU in 1995, the continental ban on snus was in effect, and the country had to get an exemption to continue to manufacture and sell snus.
Enlightened public health experts in the region, and elsewhere, had hoped that the new directive would ease these restrictions, given the clear evidence of its efficacy in reducing the harm of tobacco, while the approved products for helping smokers quit fail over 90% of the time.”
Whilst to some extent this seems to be a puff for electric cigarettes, which we do not support, it all makes very interesting reading. For the full article go to: http://www.euractiv.com/health/eu-new-tobacco-products-directiv-analysis-516927#comment-9956