RCSEd President and Dean of the Faculty of Dental Surgery React to the Proposed Tobacco and Vapes Bill

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24 May 2024

Reacting to the news that the government will be shelving proposed legislation to ban smoking for young people, Prof Rowan Parks, President of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh and Prof Grant McIntyre, Dean of the Faculty of Dental Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh said:

“We are extremely disappointed that the proposed Tobacco and Vapes Bill will not be voted on before Parliament is prorogued today.

"Both smoking and vaping have serious consequences for general as well as dental health and dentists have an important role in helping to detect early-stage cancers.

"Head and neck cancer rates are increasing primarily due to rises in mouth and throat cancer, with tobacco being one of the three major risk factors. We had hoped plans to make it illegal to sell tobacco products to anyone born after 1 January 2009 would help protect the next generation from the illnesses and harms caused by tobacco, particularly cancers.

“We are however delighted to note the strong cross-party support for the Bill so we will be urging any government that assumes office in July to introduce this Bill as a key public health priority.”


About The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh

  • RCSEd was first incorporated as the Barber Surgeons of Edinburgh in 1505 and is based in Edinburgh and Birmingham. 
  • It is one of the oldest surgical corporations in the world with a global membership of more than 32,000, including 15,000 members in the UK. 
  • The College also has a significant worldwide presence with members in over 100 countries. 
  • The College promotes the highest standards of surgical and dental practice through education, training and examinations, its liaison with external medical bodies and representation of the modern surgical and dental workforce. 
  • The College has six faculties: The Faculty of Dental Surgery, The Faculty of Surgical Trainers, The Faculty of Dental Trainers, The Faculty of Perioperative Care, The Faculty of Pre-Hospital Care and The Faculty of Remote, Rural and Humanitarian Healthcare.
  • It is also home to the UK’s only Faculty of Surgical Trainers, open to all those with an interest in surgical training regardless of College affiliation. 
  • Find RCSEd at www.rcsed.ac.uk, on X (formerly known as Twitter), on Facebook, and Instagram.

For further information, please contact comms@rcsed.ac.uk  

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