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The burden of smoking related ill health in the UK

Allender, Steven, Balakrishnan, R., Scarborough, Peter, Webster, P. and Rayner, Mike 2009, The burden of smoking related ill health in the UK, Tobacco control, vol. 18, no. 4, pp. 262-267.

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Title The burden of smoking related ill health in the UK
Author(s) Allender, Steven
Balakrishnan, R.
Scarborough, Peter
Webster, P.
Rayner, Mike
Journal name Tobacco control
Volume number 18
Issue number 4
Start page 262
End page 267
Publisher BMJ Group
Place of publication London, England
Publication date 2009
ISSN 0964-4563
1468-3318
Summary Background: Smoking is one of the biggest avoidable causes of morbidity and mortality in the United Kingdom. This paper quantifies the current health and economic burden of smoking in the UK. It provides comparisons with previous studies of the burden of smoking in the UK and with the costs for other chronic disease risk factors.

Methods: A systematic literature review to identify previous estimates of National Health Service costs attributable to smoking was undertaken. Information from the World Health Organization’s Global Burden of Disease Project and routinely collected mortality data were used to calculate mortality due to smoking in the UK. Population-attributable fractions for smoking-related diseases from the Global Burden of Disease Project were applied to NHS cost data to estimate direct financial costs.

Results: Previous studies estimated that smoking costs the NHS about £1.4 billion to £1.7 billion in 1991 and has been responsible for about 100 000 deaths per annum over the past 10 years. This paper estimates that the number of deaths attributable to smoking in 2005 was 109 164 (19% of all deaths, 27% deaths in men and 11% of deaths in women). Smoking was directly responsible for 12% of disability adjusted life years lost in 2002 (15.4% in men; 8.5% in women) and the direct cost to the NHS was £5.2 billion in 2005–6.

Conclusion: Smoking is still a considerable public health burden in the UK. Accurately establishing the burden in terms of death, disability and financial costs is important for informing national public health policy.
Notes This article has been published in the BMJ, Allender, Steven, Balakrishnan, R., Scarborough, Peter, Webster, P. and Rayner, Mike 2009, The burden of smoking related ill health in the UK, Tobacco control, vol. 18, no. 4, pp. 262-267., and can also be viewed on the journal’s website at www.bmj.com
Language eng
Field of Research 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
HERDC collection year 2009
Copyright notice ©2009, BMJ Publishing Group Ltd.
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30020448

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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.