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Tuesday 6th December 2016
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Hope to halve number of smokers by 2020

1st February 2010

MPs have announced a new move to cut the number of people who smoke in England by 50% in the next decade.

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The amount of smokers has decreased over the past ten years to 21% and ministers want to see that number fall to 10% by 2020.

The government is considering banning cigarette vending machines and taking off brand names and pictures from cigarette packets.

The NHS will be available to offer tailored quitting solutions to smokers who want to quit the habit.

Health Secretary Andy Burnham said: "We've come so far and now we'll go even further, to push forward and save even more lives."

He said the plan underlined the government's desire to "virtually eradicate the health harms caused by smoking, and I firmly believe we can halve smoking by 2020. In 10 years' time, only one-in-10 people will smoke."

He added that the health service was there to "help everyone" and said he thought in the future people would not be able to recall why people smoked to begin with.

The government said smoking was responsible for 80,000 deaths annually and cost the NHS £2.7 billion.

Chief Medical Officer Sir Liam Donaldson stated that the plan would "discourage children from taking up smoking and prevent a great number of unnecessary and early deaths".

 

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