SPECTRUM Consortium

What next for tobacco control in Scotland?

Professor Niamh Shortt queries the next steps for tobacco control in Scotland, in a blog for The Centre for Research on Environment Society and Health (CRESH)

29 May 2020

Following a recent paper published in March 2020, which found that the purchase price of tobacco is lower in more disadvantaged neighbourhoods, largely because of the higher sales of the cheapest brands in these areas, Professor Niamh Shortt has published a blog for CRESH querying what the next steps might be for tobacco control in Scotland. 

CRESH is a virtual centre joining scientists from the Universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow in Scotland. Their research is focused on exploring how physical and social environments can influence population health, for better and for worse.

Cigarette smoking is one of the leading causes of preventable ill-health, hospitalisations and deaths in Scotland. Approximately 19% of adults in Scotland smoke, this rises to 32% in the most deprived fifth of neighbourhoods and falls to 9% in the most affluent neighbourhoods. As Scotland moves towards a ‘Tobacco Endgame’ the Scottish Government have a target to reduce smoking prevalence to less than 5% by 2034. A recent review of smoking projections by Cancer Research UK however suggests that Scotland may miss this target by 16 years in the poorest neighbourhoods. Professor Shortt notes that it is important that we continue to explore all potential determinants of smoking, particularly those that drive smoking in our most deprived communities.

To find out more about what this research means and what can we take from it, read the blog.

View the blog on the CRESH website

Related links

Visit the CRESH website

Adult smoking in Scotland on the Scottish Public Health Observatory website 

'Smoking prevelance predictions for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland' report from Cancer Research UK