The Department of Health (DH) asked the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE or the Institute) to produce public health guidance on how to prevent the uptake of smoking by children and young people. This guidance focuses on mass-media and point-of-sales measures.

The guidance is for all those with a remit to improve the health and wellbeing of children and young people under 18. This includes those working in the NHS, local authorities, the criminal justice system and the wider public, voluntary and community sectors. It is also aimed at the private sector, in particular the retail industry and mass-media services. In addition, it may be of interest to children, young people and their carers, as well as other members of the public.

The guidance complements and supports a range of NICE publications on how to help people to stop smoking. Topics covered include: services in primary care, pharmacies, local authorities and workplaces, particularly for manual working groups, pregnant women and hard to reach communities; and the use of varenicline.

NICE is also working on guidance specifically for local authorities and NHS primary care services on school-based interventions to prevent the uptake of smoking among children (for further details, see section 7).

The Public Health Interventions Advisory Committee (PHIAC) has considered a review of the evidence, qualitative and quantitative research with children and young people, an economic appraisal, stakeholder comments and the results of fieldwork in developing these recommendations.

Details of PHIAC membership are given in appendix A. The methods used to develop the guidance are summarised in appendix B. Supporting documents used in the preparation of this document are listed in appendix E. Full details of the evidence collated, including fieldwork data and activities and stakeholder comments, are available on the NICE website, along with a list of the stakeholders involved and the Institute's supporting process and methods manuals.