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Volume 408: debated on Tuesday 1 July 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans he has for further measures to combat smoking. [122429]

We are implementing a comprehensive tobacco programme to help the 7 in 10 smokers who want to quit and to prevent people starting. As well as introducing legislation, we are investing £138 million in the National Health Service stop smoking services over the next three years and £39 million in the next year on prevention.The most recent estimated cost to the NHS of treating smoking related diseases was for 1997 and was between £1.4 billion and 1.7 billion for England

1 '. As total net NHS expenditure for the year 1996–97 was £33.0 billion, the percentage of expenditure this represents is between 4.2 per cent. and 5.4 per cent.

1 "Cost Effectiveness of Smoking Cessation Interventions" by the Health Education Authority, in collaboration with the University of York published in 1997.