National Institiue for Health and Clinical Excellence

Annual Review - 2009/2010

The Fellowships and Scholarships will allow us to engage even more closely with the NHS

First cohort of NICE fellows and scholars appointed

In March 2009, our Research and Development team launched a new Fellows and Scholars programme, awarding 10 fellowships and 10 scholarships to a range of leading health professionals with expertise in areas such as general practice, public health, psychiatry and radiology.

The Fellows and Scholars will represent NICE within their local health and professional communities and get involved with projects on clinical audit, education and policy development.

Welcoming the new appointees in March, Professor Peter Littlejohns, Director of Clinical and Public Health at NICE, said: “The fellowships and scholarships will provide them with opportunities to develop further in their own careers and improve the quality of healthcare in their local areas. We also hope that they will allow us to engage even more closely with the NHS and foster a growing network of individuals who are committed to promoting our core values.”

Citizens Council discusses harm reduction for smokers

The Citizens Council, a group of 30 ordinary members of the public, is responsible for ensuring the views of the public underpin the thoughts and processes of NICE.

In October 2009, the Council met to discuss whether harm reduction is a valid strategy for tackling the problem of smoking. Harm reduction is defined as providing a less harmful alternative to smoking while accepting that nicotine addiction continues, and might include replacing cigarettes with a clean form of nicotine, or with cigarettes that deliver lower levels of toxins.

Most Citizens Council members concluded that harm reduction was not a valid strategy. They were keen to see greater public awareness of the smoking cessation services already available, and better public understanding of what makes smoking harmful.

NICE will now take the Council’s considerations into account in producing guidance on harm reduction in smoking.

Read the full report on the NICE website