With the distribution of new Stop Smoking packs by the Scottish Executive, smokers in Greater Glasgow have never had so many opportunities to stub out their deadly habit.
The packs, which carry the strapline, ‘I'm helping to clear the air', will be given free to everyone who obtains nicotine replacement patches and other anti-smoking therapies from Greater Glasgow's 217 community pharmacies.
Each pack contains contact details for the national ‘Smokeline' helpline (0800 84 84 84) and an acclaimed booklet ‘Stopping smoking made easier', which is full of practical advice and information.
The packs beef up the NHS's local anti-smoking armoury, which includes:
·A dedicated Smoking Concerns team offering advice and support
·Smoking cessation groups across the city
·The Starting Fresh scheme - already based in pharmacies - which offers tailored support for each smoker alongside NRT (Nicotine Replacement Therapy)
·Workplace events and advice supported by Scotland's Health at Work
The new initiative comes on the back of a very successful range of events staged by the Smoking Concerns team on national no-smoking day on 9 March.These gave shoppers in the St Enoch Centre and supermarkets well as office workers a chance to start weeding out their addiction
Also, NHS Greater Glasgow's public consultation on new smoking rules continues, with responses coming in thick and fast.The proposed ban on smoking would cover everything from NHS vehicles to hospital day rooms and entrances to Accident and Emergency units.
Evelyn Borland, Director of Health Promotion at NHS Greater Glasgow, said:
"The Scottish Executive's initiative offers smokers practical, down to earth advice which could save their lives.I urge everyone who is starting or contemplating the process of quitting to ask their pharmacist for the stop smoking pack.
"Smoking causes untold suffering and misery to the people who succumb to diseases it causes and their families who are left to pick up the pieces.I would say to each smoker: there's no need to be an April Fool; there are plenty of helping hands to stop you becoming yet another fatal statistic."
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NOTES TO EDITORS
1.Details of the Scottish Executive stop smoking pack can be found at www.smokefreescotland.com
2.The pack is being made available in over 1100 community pharmacies across the whole of Scotland
3.NHS Greater Glasgow's smoking consultation close on 30 May 2005 and can be viewed at www.nhsgg.org.uk/smoking or people can obtain a printed version of this from Smoking Concerns on 0141 201 9825. An online consultation form is available on the internet section, but views can also be put in writing to Shirley Gordon, NHS Greater Glasgow, Dalian House, 350 St Vincent Street, Glasgow, G3 8YZ, or can be faxed to 0141 201 4733 or can be emailed to [email protected].
o33% of adults in the Greater Glasgow area are smokers and research has shown that more than two thirds of them would like give up.