Being in the mood to look back on the effectiveness of tobacco control efforts (see Ireland's Abject Failure below), let's see how that Scottish heart attack miracle has been coming along. You'll recall the professorship-winning study by Jill Pell which claimed that hospital admissions for acute coronary syndrome fell by 17% in the first year of the ban.
Pell didn't go down the traditional route of finding out how many cases were admitted to Scottish hospitals and comparing rates before and after the ban (the data are readily available). That would be far too obvious and accurate. Instead, she went to the elaborate effort of limiting her sample to a selection of hospitals and then extrapolated the results across the whole of Scotland. After all, why use the actual data when you can create your own?
The answer, of course, is that there wasn't a 17%, or anything like it. And now, with three years post-ban data in the can, let's see how that heart miracle looks using the real NHS admissions data.
And, just to be sure, let's look at the rates of acute myocardial infarction (heart attacks).
Is any further comment really required?