All staff at Totally Wicked corporate stores are being provided with National Centre for Smoking Cessation and Training (NCSCT) practitioner training. Completing this training enables staff in developing the skills and motivational techniques to help and support people who want to quit smoking.

What is the NCSCT?

The National Centre for Smoking Cessation and Training (NCSCT) is a social enterprise committed to support the delivery of effective evidence-based tobacco control programmes and smoking cessation interventions provided by local stop smoking services.

The organisation supports practitioners with training courses, information and guidance documents. The NCSCT are pro-vaping and released an extensive briefing on e-cigarettes, in 2016. Since then, they have released numerous training documents for best vaping practices.

The NCSCT also sells supporting materials to aid cessation support. This includes ‘Vaping allowed’ vinyl window stickers and posters, and this cements their position as a pro-vaping organisation.

Why is NCSCT practitioner training important?

E-cigarettes are now the most popular stop smoking aid in the UK. There are over 3 million vapers in the UK, over half of which are now ex-smokers. However, it’s estimated that there are still over 7 million smokers in the UK.

The most proven way for a person to successfully quit smoking is to access support as well as a stop smoking aid. There is therefore huge scope for these smokers to give up with the help of an e-cigarette, combined with support.

Picking up an e-cigarette at a vape store and giving it a try may work for a lot of smokers. However, at Totally Wicked we wanted to arm our retail staff with extra training and knowledge. This allows staff to understand the complexities of smoking habits and nicotine addiction.

In 2018, a study funded by Cancer Research UK suggested that Stop Smoking Services should work closely with vape shops. There is a massive opportunity for synergy between the two, as both share the mission of wanting to help smokers to quit. This training bridges the gap between vape shops and stop smoking services, reinforcing the message that vaping can be invaluable to people that want to quit.

Should all vaping staff be given NCSCT training?

The reason e-cigarettes hit the market over a decade ago was to provide a less harmful alternative to smoking. However, with irresponsible reporting from media outlets, vaping’s reputation has been unfairly tarnished.

Unfortunately, a concerningly large proportion of the population incorrectly believe that vaping is as harmful or more harmful than smoking. Whilst also having the very important primary benefit of helping smokers successfully quit, having vape store staff trained to help with quit attempts might go some way in helping to correct this misperception.

A firm connection between vape stores and smoking cessation services should help to restore vaping’s deserved credibility as a cessation aid and encourage more smokers to give e-cigarettes a try.

Chris Green, Totally Wicked Smoking Cessation Officer said:

“A vape store owner generally knows a lot about e-cigarettes and e-liquids, but not a lot about what motivates a person to quit. This training gives the retail staff the skills to help motivate and formulate a plan to give the customer the best possible chance to quit smoking for good.”