In March 2011 the Coalition Government has launched its new tobacco control plan – ‘Healthy lives, healthy people: a tobacco control plan for England’. This eagerly awaited document has now given us the top level perspective on the future of tobacco control in the coming years by setting three national ambitions to focus activity across the whole system. The three ambitions are:
Reduce smoking prevalence among adults in England: To reduce the adult (aged 18 or over) smoking prevalence in England to 18.5 per cent or less by the end of 2015, meaning potentially around 210,000 fewer smokers a year.
Reduce smoking prevalence among young people in England:To reduce rates of regular smoking among 15 year olds in England to 12 per cent or less by the end of 2015.
Reduce smoking during pregnancy in England: To reduce rates of smoking throughout pregnancy to 11 per cent or less by the end of 2015 (measured at time of giving birth).
These national ambitions will not translate into centrally driven targets for local authorities, instead local areas will decide on their own priorities and ways of improving health in their communities, allowing us to formalise plans for our own work in Lincolnshire focusing on the three key aims.
Work is now well underway on the development of our own tobacco control plan for Lincolnshire and aim to ensure that Lincolnshire remains at the forefront of England’s tobacco control activities.