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Vaping is 95% Less Harmful than Cigarettes

According to an independent evidence review commissioned by Public Health England electronic cigarettes are a lot safer than tobacco, and smokers who haven’t been successful quitting tobacco using other methods could be encouraged to use the devices along with behavioral therapy to try kicking the habit.

Public Health England, an executive agency sponsored by the Department of Health, published a report yesterday titled E-Cigarettes: An Evidence Update. It found that vaping and e-cigarettes are 95% less harmful than traditional tobacco cigarettes. A link to the 121 page study can be found here.

Key findings of the review include:

The current best estimate is that e-cigarettes are around 95% less harmful than smoking
Nearly half the population (44.8%) don’t realize e-cigarettes are much less harmful than smoking
There is no evidence so far that e-cigarettes are acting as a route into smoking for children or non-smokers

The information above can be found at

Out of the 2.6 million e-cigarette users in Great Britain, nearly all are current or ex-smokers.

Tobacco reduction campaigners say the public needs to be educated to recognise that although e-cigarettes, like tobacco cigarettes, may contain nicotine, they do not contain more dangerous chemicals such as tar and arsenic.

“E-cigarettes are not completely risk free but when compared to smoking, evidence shows they carry just a fraction of the harm. The problem is people increasingly think they are at least as harmful and this may be keeping millions of smokers from quitting,” Professor Kevin Fenton, Public Health England’s director of Health and well being, said in the release.

While stressing that e-cigarettes are not free from risk, PHE now believes that e-cigarettes “have the potential to make a significant contribution to the endgame for tobacco”.

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