05.07.19 Air Pollution,#FridayFact

Smoking in the UK continues to be a significant health issue.

This week, Public Health England released the results from their annual survey of Smoking Habits in the United Kingdom, read the report here.  We have created a downloadable infographic to highlight some of the key findings.  It is clear that while the proportion of people smoking continues to decline in the UK, it remains a significant risk to the health of smokers and those who inhale second-hand cigarette smoke. More work is needed to educate smokers about the health risks and the effects their smoking may have on others.

As part of this release, it seemed a good idea to highlight some of the work that IOM has carried out over recent years into the area of smoking and health. This article coincides with the release of our latest 50th-anniversary poster.

IOM contributed to a large-scale programme of work, funded by NHS Health Scotland and the Department of Health,  evaluating the effect of smoke-free legislation on fine particulate matter in the air in 105 bars in Scotland and England.

The results showed that the bans on smoking in public had a substantial reduction in the concentration of fine particles, ranging from 84-93% lower than before the ban. Following this legislative intervention, bar workers were able to work in a much healthier environment.

In 2007 we also led a study to investigate the impact of the smoke-free legislation in Northern Ireland. More recently, we carried out extensive research around the quality of the air we breathe and the effect that air pollution has on a range of health issues.

The 50th-anniversary poster designs are ground-breaking in communicating scientific advances and impacts using a visual medium.  Do you have any comments or feedback?  We would love to hear your opinions.