The UK government could soon make it mandatory to insert messages inside cigarette packs to help smokers quit.1
The Department of Health and Social Care is soliciting consultation support on Monday to seek views on adding and designing pack inserts into tobacco products, including cigarettes.2
The inserts would reportedly list the health and financial benefits of quitting, including how smokers can save £2K ($2.5K) a year by quitting.3
The Department, which aims to make the UK smoke-free by 2030, said the inserts would also direct people to support they may need to stop smoking.4
The government hopes that adding cards outlining the benefits of quitting tobacco in cigarette packs could lead to an additional 30K smokers giving up smoking, and help save up to £1.6B ($2.2B) in health costs.5
While warnings have been printed on the outside boxes for more than 50 years, approximately 76K people in the UK die from smoking yearly.6
Narrative A, as provided by British Herald. This news should be applauded. Deaths from smoking remain one of the leading preventable causes of illness and mortality in the UK. By helping millions of UK residents quit smoking, the British government can help people live healthier lives, lower the death rate for tobacco-related diseases, and reduce healthcare costs.
Narrative B, as provided by Cancer Research UK. Grisly photos and heinous warnings printed on cigarette packets alone haven't deterred people with a high nicotine dependence from smoking. Being a smoker is a willful, personal decision, which is why the UK government — almost a decade behind achieving its target for England to be smoke-free by 2030 — is bound to fail in combating a killer addiction without more substantive action.