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E-cigarettes: Public Health England's evidence-based confusion

The Lancet has published comments regarding last week’s, Public Health England (PHE) “landmark review” of evidence about e-cigarettes.

Tobacco is the largest single cause of preventable deaths in England - e-cigarettes may have a part to play to curb tobacco use. 

But the reliance by PHE on work that the authors themselves accept is methodologically weak, and which is made all the more perilous by the declared conflicts of interest surrounding its funding, raises serious questions not only about the conclusions of the PHE report, but also about the quality of the agency's peer review process.  PHE claims that it protects and improves the nation's health and wellbeing. To do so, it needs to rely on the highest quality evidence. On this occasion, it has fallen short of its mission.

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