Vape Business Ireland (VBI) is delighted that the HSE’s Quit.ie website now includes a section on vaping. However, while this is a welcome step forward, the website is lacking information on vaping and its role as a viable alternative to smoking.
Stop Smoking New Zealand, The American Cancer Society, Public Health England, Cancer Research UK and many others have endorsed vaping as a significantly less harmful alternative to smoking, but not here in Ireland. Vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking and should be seen as one of the suite of options advised by the HSE for smokers who find it hard to quit.
The Irish Government has set itself a target of 5% smoking prevalence by 2025, but it is currently stuck at 17%. Furthermore, the HSE has confirmed in its report The State of Tobacco Control in Ireland 2018 that, assuming the current trend continues, and all other factors remain constant, Ireland can only expect to be tobacco free by 2052 and not 2025 as originally planned. In comparison, the UK could expect to be smoke-free by 2030, 22 years ahead of Ireland.
Director of VBI Keith Flynn said: “While this is a progressive step on the part of Quit.ie, more information on vaping needs to be included on the website. According to the Healthy Ireland Survey 41% of Irish smokers used vaping to quit smoking in 2018 – up from 37% in 2017. There is a growing demand for information on vaping products and it should be made available on Quit.ie.”