National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)
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NICE appraisal on varenicline (Champix) for smoking cessation
NICE has issued a draft version of its guidance on the use of varenicline (Champix) for smoking cessation. NICE has not yet issued final guidance on the use of varenicline. Stakeholders now have the opportunity to appeal against the draft guidance. Subject to an appeal being received, final guidance is expected in July 2007.
The draft recommendations are as follows:
• Varenicline, within its licensed indications, is recommended as an option for smokers who have
expressed a desire to quit smoking
• Varenicline should normally be prescribed only as part of a programme of behavioural support.
A spokesperson for NICE said: “Having looked at all the evidence, our independent Committee have concluded that varenicline appears to be a good way to help people who want to quit smoking. The draft guidance also recommends that varenicline should normally be provided in conjunction with counselling and support, but if such support is not available, this should not stop smokers receiving treatment with varenicline.
“NICE follows an open and transparent process which includes genuine consultation so changes in draft recommendations can occur. Stakeholders now have the opportunity to appeal against the draft guidance. Subject to any appeal, final guidance is expected to be issued to the NHS in July 2007.”
Notes to Editors
About the draft guidance
1. The varenicline for smoking cessation draft guidance is at http://www.nice.org.uk/page.aspx?o=431452
2. The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) is the independent organisation responsible for providing national guidance on the promotion of good health and the prevention and treatment of ill health.
3. NICE produces guidance in three areas of health:
• public health – guidance on the promotion of good health and the prevention of ill health for those working in the NHS, local authorities and the wider public and voluntary sector
• health technologies – guidance on the use of new and existing medicines, treatments and procedures within the NHS
• clinical practice – guidance on the appropriate treatment and care of people with specific diseases and conditions within the NHS.
4. NICE recently published guidance on providing support in the workplace for people who want to stop smoking: http://guidance.nice.org.uk/PHI5 .