How many people in the UK smoke?
Smoking is a leading cause of preventable death. In 2015, around 15.5% of adults (17% males, 14% females) smoked. There were 79,000 smoking-related deaths in England, with almost half a million hospital admissions attributed to smoking, albeit that the proportion of population who smoke has declined over time and the number of cigarettes smoked is lower than in the 1970s. Dramatic reductions have occurred since the 1950s, when 80% of men and 40% of women smoked.
Are e-cigarettes still contributing to the decline?
E-cigarettes are now the most popular stop smoking aid in England, with around 2.8 million vapers across the country, 1 million of whom currently smoke and 1.5 million who have completely stopped smoking. In addition there are 1.3 million former smokers who have used e-cigarettes but no longer do including 440,000 who had been regular users of e-cigarettes.
There is now strong UK evidence that vaping is highly effective in helping smokers quit, and the latest data shows that quitting smoking remains the most common reason for adult vaping.