This guideline covers services to help people quit smoking. It aims to reduce the number of people who smoke by ensuring that stop smoking services are as effective as possible. It seeks to raise awareness of the range and types of support available.

In November 2013, some recommendations in this guidance were replaced by tobacco: harm-reduction approaches to smoking and smoking cessation in secondary care: acute, maternity and mental health services


This guideline includes recommendations on:

Who is it for?

  • Health, social care and other practitioners who advise people on how to stop smoking
  • Organisations commissioning, planning, providing or supporting stop smoking services
  • People who smoke (or use another form of tobacco) and want to quit, and their families and carers

Guideline development process

How we develop NICE guidelines

Next review: To be scheduled

This guidance updates and replaces NICE technology appraisal guidance 39 (June 2001).


Your responsibility

The recommendations in this guideline represent the view of NICE, arrived at after careful consideration of the evidence available. When exercising their judgement, professionals and practitioners are expected to take this guideline fully into account, alongside the individual needs, preferences and values of their patients or the people using their service. It is not mandatory to apply the recommendations, and the guideline does not override the responsibility to make decisions appropriate to the circumstances of the individual, in consultation with them and their families and carers or guardian.

Local commissioners and providers of healthcare have a responsibility to enable the guideline to be applied when individual professionals and people using services wish to use it. They should do so in the context of local and national priorities for funding and developing services, and in light of their duties to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, to advance equality of opportunity and to reduce health inequalities. Nothing in this guideline should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with complying with those duties.

Commissioners and providers have a responsibility to promote an environmentally sustainable health and care system and should assess and reduce the environmental impact of implementing NICE recommendations wherever possible.