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UK heart disease deaths fall by over 20%


UK heart disease deaths fall by over 20%

UK heart disease deaths fall by over 20% since indoor smoking ban

[ Original article from The Guardian ]

"Deaths from heart disease and strokes caused by smoking have fallen dramatically since lighting up in pubs, restaurants and other enclosed public places in England was banned 10 years ago.

New figures have shown that the number of smokers aged 35 and over dying from heart attacks and other cardiac conditions has dropped by over 20% since 2007 while fatalities from a stroke are almost 14% down.

The statistics, which Public Health England (PHE) has shared with the Guardian, come as medical, public health and anti-tobacco groups prepare to mark the 10th anniversary next Friday of smoking being prohibited in indoor public places by Tony Blair's Labour government on 1 July 2007.

Figures collected by PHE's Local Tobacco Control Profiles network show that while there were 32,548 deaths from heart disease attributable to smoking in 2007-09, there were 25,777 between 2013 and 2015 - a fall of 20.8%. Similarly, a total of 9,743 smokers died from a stroke in 2007-09, but fewer - 8,334 - between 2013 and 2015, a drop of 14.5%.

Duncan Selbie, PHE's chief executive, hailed the figures as proof of the ban's huge beneficial impact on health. 'The law has played a key part in the huge cultural change we have seen in the past decade, especially among younger people, a change that has literally saved thousands from disabling chronic diseases and premature death,' he told the Guardian.

'The smokefree legislation has been extraordinary in the way we now experience and enjoy pubs, clubs, restaurants and so many other public places. It was undoubtedly the single most important public health reform in generations,' he added.

The decline in smoking-related heart deaths is especially significant because smoking still accounts for about one in every six deaths in England - about 79,000 people a year. Fatalities due to heart disease make up a substantial proportion of them. Smoking-related deaths are three times more likely to occur among poorer people than those from better-off backgrounds, research showed."

Read more from the article in The Guardian

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