Quitting Success

Posted 15th September 2021 by Dave Cross
The NHS has released its quarterly report presenting results from the monitoring of the NHS Stop Smoking Services (SSS) in England during the period April 2020 to March 2021. It reveals that the number of self-reported quitters (105,403) was significantly higher than in recent years. The news has been welcomed by trade body the UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA).

The report shows:

  • 59% of people successfully quit (self-reported). Of 178,815 people setting a quit date, 105,403 were successful. Of those successfully quitting, 3% had their results confirmed by Carbon Monoxide verification
  • Quitting success (self-reported) increased with age. 45% of those aged under 18 were successful, compared to 61% of those aged 60 and over
  • 48% of the pregnant women who set a quit date successfully quit (self-reported). Of 18,087 pregnant women setting a quit date, 8,678 were successful. Of pregnant women successfully quitting, 4% had their results confirmed by Carbon Monoxide

 UKVIA says it welcomes the new statistics, pointing out that the 59% figure is “significantly higher than in recent years – since 2010/11 the rate has ranged between 49% and 52%.

Other findings also revealed that the largest number of quit attempts came from the 45-59 old age group and the routine and manual occupations, with the next most represented group being ‘never worked or unemployed for over a year.”

John Dunne, the director general at the UKVIA said: “It’s great to see the quit rates of smokers using the service going up but it’s a real shame that this data does not clearly recognise the contribution played by vaping where there is significant evidence which shows it is the best aid in supporting a successful quit.

“Whilst there is a reference to unlicensed nicotine containing products, vaping is not mentioned, yet nicotine replacement therapies are, and these have been proven to be much less effective than vape products in helping smokers successful quit cigarettes. The data also only focuses on successful quits after four weeks which is an extremely short period of time for someone who is trying to kick a long-term habit.


“We would urge NHS Stop Smoking Services to reference the contribution made by vaping in its reporting of self-reported quits in order to give a clear picture of the different methods smokers across the country are using to quit.

“It’s also good to see that those from lower socio-economic groups are amongst the highest quit attempts. The levelling up agenda, through enabling smokers to benefit financially and healthwise from quitting through vaping, is very much a focus of the efforts of the UKVIA.”


 Dave Cross
Article by Dave Cross
Freelance writer, salad destroyer and live culture convert.