Sunday 27 March 2011

That Scottish Heart Attack Miracle Again

As an update to Friday's article responding to the daft claim that Scotland's smoking ban reduced heart attacks by 17%, BrianB has provided more recent figures as promised in the comments.

So, here's that dramatic reduction again (up to March 2010, click to enlarge).

OK, maybe the monthly tallies don't show the trend clearly enough. Perhaps the annual totals will back up Jill Pell's statistics and prove - as Sally Haw asserted - that ...

"The ban really has been one of Scotland's big public health success stories.

"This bold step has really paid off, with a 17% reduction in heart attacks among bar workers."

It is to be noted that the 2009/10 figure is provisional and will almost certainly rise once uncertain diagnoses are added. Yes, Sally, this 'really' does mean that the erstwhile downward trend has halted, and that Scotland 'really' has seen two successive annual upward movements in heart attack admissions.

Yep, it's still one of the worst junk stats ever uttered by anti-smoking nutjobs.

Don't ever expect to see such heresy mentioned on the BBC or by the dullards in Holyrood though. It was never about health anyway, remember.


James Higham said...

Deep fried Mars Bars would obviously reduce the incidence of heart disease as well.

Lysistrata said...

Thank you, DP.
The more often this lying false result is exposed, the better. To be honest, I never tire of looking at the real results. An update every couple of months would be fine by me....

Anonymous said...

Could be an increase due to people losing the will to live.

Just Woke Up said...

"Could be an increase due to people losing the will to live. "

Best comment I've read in a while. hahaha

BrianB said...


All of these statistics are very much in the public domain and are downloadable as Excel files from here.

Table AC5 has the monthly figures shown in the chart.

The next update will be when the 2010/11 data is released - about November 2011 - so watch this space!

Anonymous said...

Yes I think the scottish diet is very unhealthy.
I remember a C4 documentary about the Alutian island inuits who have the lowest heart attack rate in the world.
In one of the clips a group of hunters many in their 70's paused for a fag break.
They live on sea food.
However as more of them take up a modern diet containing more processed foods the rate is indeed increasing.

Anonymous said...

Hey, DP – you could make this into a sort of a game. Supply these graphs, with the years and the “smoking ban” arrow removed, to anyone who quotes this “heart attack miracle” as “proof that smoking bans work,” tell them that the graph represents the period covering the introduction of the ban, and then ask them to put their own arrow in at whatever point they think the smoking ban was introduced. Could be interesting …..

Mr A said...

Dick, do you know if esteemed blog mascot and all-round bastion of common sense, Philip Davies MP, actually reads your blog? I see these types of figures all over the place yet STILL the Pell cock-waffle is mentioned again and again despite being debunked by The Times, and yes, even the BBC (!). I'd love to see him raise this in the House at some point so that they get wider exposure.

Klaus K said...

Labour’s Dumbarton candidate celebrates five years of smoke-free public places:

"Scottish Labour’s candidate for the Dumbarton seat has marked the 5th anniversary of the smoking ban, saying the nation’s health has improved ‘immeasurably’ since it was introduced."

Immeasurably = it could not be measured?

Anonymous said...

Ye gods!

That last link nearly made me vomit my vodka.

Fucking scum.

I knew there would be some truimphalistic garbage about the 5th year of the Scottish ban, but FFS having a fucking ugly fat bitch like Baillie harrumfing it has to be scarping the bottom of the bottom of the wood in the barrell.

Sorry for the naughty language, I'm rather pissed off with it all.

Anonymous said...

"Sheila Duffy, chief executive of anti-tobacco charity ASH Scotland, said research has shown that "Scotland is a healthier nation for having introduced smoke-free public places" but said Scotland must continue to take "all steps necessary" to reduce deaths further."

Did you see that?

Did you see that?

"all steps necessary"

Very good, that bitch and her posse are coming round to YOUR house with a rope.

Anonymous said...

you are an idiot mate. why do you expect that the overall number would decrease?? if smoking is banned that doesn't necessarily imply there are fewer people smoking. it's true that passive smoking has many fewer fatalities so those numbers are simply buffered out.

i'm not saying that any of the miracles is actually true, but the smoking ban is good, fact.