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UK Gov and Swap to Stop Smoking Cessation

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Time to read 1 min

As the UK government’s “Swap to Stop” scheme rolls out, they have faced allegations that they are undermining their own policies in favour of a vape tax.

While the country still reels from the announced proposals for both a vape tax and a ban on disposable vaping products within England and Wales, The UK government stand accused of undermining their own plans to create a smoke free generation by 2030.

In explosive moves, PM Rishi Sunak has called for the ban on disposable devices to come into play as early as 2025. This will be closely followed by a taxation applied to all vape products, especially vape juices, in 2026.

All of these new taxes and rules come hot on the heels of the NHS’ own Swap to Stop policy, where they issue free vaping starter kits to 20% of all English smokers. These vape kits would encourage smokers to switch to vaping under the guidance of the NHS.

Between both messages, we cannot help but feel that the British public are bound to be a little confused.

What is Swap to Stop?

The Swap to Stop scheme was announced in December 2023 and it was pitched as a groundbreaking new way to tackle smoking cessation. Launched by the National Health Service in January 2024, the scheme is aimed at the 5.3 million smokers in England who are trying to quit.

The World First scheme has seen the NHS proceed to prescribe vape devices to local authorities. They will further distribute these vape kits to locals who are trying to quit smoking through the NHS programs. These already include smoking cessation groups, support through patches and gums, and online tools to help smokers make the switch.

The Details of Swap to Stop

Swap to Stop was initially aimed at the 5.3 million smokers in England who the NHS estimated would make the New Year’s resolution to quit smoking. Accompanied by a larger than life advertising campaign fronted by former England keeper and ex-smoker David James, the swap to stop scheme initially issued more than 259,000 vape devices.

This move would give 1 in 5 smokers in the UK a vaping starter kit, ideal for beginners into the vape world. These starting kits feature both reusable vape devices and chargers. Patients also receive instructions on how to use their device and can thereafter rely on resources such as the Vape Room 101 for vape use guides.