Lessons from Canada for NZ: Carbon, Cycling, Tobacco, Nutrition and Cannabis

Monday, April 8th, 2019 | tedla55p | No Comments

Prof Nick Wilson, Dr Amanda Jones, A/Prof George Thomson

Canada has a number of progressive public policies which can influence health. In this blog we briefly look at 6 potential lessons for NZ in the domains of: (i) responding to climate change; (ii) supporting cycling; (iii) tobacco control; (iv) controls on food marketing directed at children; (v) healthy food guidelines; and (vi) cannabis law reform.

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Limiting the size of single serve sugary drinks: New NZ study on health and cost impacts

Monday, April 1st, 2019 | tedla55p | No Comments

Dr Cristina Cleghorn, Prof Nick Wilson, Dr Helen Eyles

There is a lot of focus on sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) internationally, due to their role in tooth decay, obesity and diabetes [1-3], their lack of beneficial nutrients, and potential acceptability as an intervention target [4]. Our just published study has shown that an intervention to reduce the size of all single serve SSBs would probably be cost-effective in NZ [5]. In this Blog we elaborate on the issues and consider this intervention in the context of other interventions for addressing NZ’s obesogenic environment.

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Vaping very likely to be improving health in NZ – but how does this compare with other options?

Monday, March 25th, 2019 | tedla55p | No Comments

Prof Nick Wilson, Dr Frederieke Petrović-van der Deen, Dr Cristina Cleghorn, A/Prof Coral Gartner, Prof Tony Blakely

Our just published modelling study suggests that easier access to nicotine via vaping as a replacement for tobacco smoking, will improve the health of the NZ population. The estimated health gain is about the same as 10% per annum tobacco tax increases per year for 15 years, or a national colorectal cancer screening programme. Considering all sources of uncertainty, our study supports cautious liberalisation of nicotine-containing e-cigarettes – as NZ is doing. In this blog we discuss this new study and issues that policy-makers should consider to maximise the potential health gain – and minimise risks.

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Lime E-Scooters – Avoiding a collision course with public health?

Monday, February 11th, 2019 | tedla55p | 2 Comments

Prof Janet Hoek, Assoc Prof George Thomson, Prof Nick Wilson, Dr Caroline Shaw

Currently introduced in four New Zealand cities, Lime electric scooters (e-scooters) have elicited varied responses. Proponents argue they will help reduce traffic density, thus bringing health and environmental benefits, while critics suggest they risk unacceptable overall harm to pedestrians, users themselves, and to taxpayers, who fund treatments for injuries. In this blog, we consider the public health implications of Lime e-scooters, review how policy makers could maximise the potentially desirable outcomes offered by e-scooters while minimising the harms they pose, and consider wider questions regarding allocation of urban space.

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What does the EY Tobacco Excise Tax Evaluation Report mean for reaching the Smokefree 2025 Goal?

Thursday, January 24th, 2019 | tedla55p | No Comments

Richard Edwards, Janet Hoek, Anaru Waa – ASPIRE 2025 and University of Otago

This blog comments on the Ernst and Young (EY) report to the Ministry of Health, which evaluated tobacco excise tax increases as a strategy for achieving the Government’s Smokefree 2025 goal [1]. The report’s recommendations, including continuing annual tax excise increases (conditional on positive impacts demonstrated in enhanced monitoring) and implementing comprehensive and multi-faceted complementary measures, are highly consistent with those made in the NZ tobacco control sector’s Achieving Smokefree Aotearoa Plan (ASAP) launched a year previously [2]. The report strengthens the overwhelming case for implementing a Government-led, comprehensive strategy to achieve the Smokefree 2025 goal equitably for all peoples in Aotearoa.

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