Health board signs charter on smoking

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Scotland’s largest health authority has thrown its weight behind a national bid to make the country tobacco-free by 2034.

Greater Glasgow and Clyde’s board member John Matthews OBE has signed ASH Scotland’s Charter for a Tobacco-Free Generation.

Despite a continuing drop in Greater Glasgow and Clyde’s smoking rates, smoking remains the biggest single preventable cause of ill-health and premature death in Scotland.

It accounts for almost one in four deaths and 33,500 hospital admissions annually.

Smoking costs the NHS around £400 million each year in smoking-related treatment.

Mr Matthews, who chair of the board’s public health committee, said: “Tobacco is still the most common preventable cause of death in Scotland, with smoking to blame for around a quarter of all deaths.

“Signing this charter is important as it shows our continued commitment to reducing smoking and our determination to ensure that all children will grow up free from the harmful effects of tobacco. We are committing the board to further sustained action to reduce tobacco-related harm by encouraging people not to start, supporting them to stop or protecting them from tobacco smoke.”