From February 2017, information about the work of the MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, University of Glasgow is available and updated on the University of Glasgow website.

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The report of the Scottish Health Survey 2014 – the tenth in the series funded by the Scottish Government – has been published.

Smoking, alcohol, and health risk inequalities – the Scottish Health Survey 2014

posted on: Sep 25, 2015

Smoking, alcohol, and health risk inequalities – the Scottish Health Survey 2014

The report of the Scottish Health Survey 2014 – the tenth in the series funded by the Scottish Government – has been published. Dr Linsay Gray and Prof Alastair Leyland from the MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit authored chapters on adult smoking, adult alcohol consumption and inequalities in health risks.

The main findings of these chapters are:

Smoking

  • One in twenty adults in Scotland use e-cigarettes
  • Prevalence of e-cigarette use is higher among current and ex-smokers, with 15% of current cigarette smokers and 7% of ex-smokers using e-cigarettes, compared to only 1% of people who have never smoked cigarettes regularly
  • Two-thirds of smokers said they would like to quit smoking
  • Just under two-thirds of recent ex-smokers and current smokers who had attempted to quit said they used a nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) product or e-cigarettes in the previous three months
  • The most common items used as part of a recent quit attempt were nicotine patches and e-cigarettes

Alcohol consumption

  • The prevalence of drinking in excess of the government guidelines declined significantly from 2003 to 2014 both for men (from 53% to 46%) and women (from 42% to 36%).

Inequalities in health risks

  • Adherence to the physical activity guideline for adults declined steadily with increasing area deprivation; there was no clear association for children
  • The proportion of children in the most deprived areas that had participated in sport in the past week was at least 10 percentage points lower in most years than the proportion in the least deprived areas; this inequality in sport participation has widened over time
  • In most years during 2003 to 2014, the prevalence of obesity was at least 10 percentage points higher for adults in the most deprived quintile than in the least

A summary of all the main findings can be found here.

The Scottish Health Survey is a designated National Statistics product for Scotland.  This means that the statistics are deemed to be compliant with the Code of Practice on Official Statistics, produced according to sound methods and managed impartially and objectively in the public interest.