St Mirren FC defender Ryan McCay kicked off the expansion of “Starting Fresh”, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde’s unique pharmacy-led smoking cessation project, in pharmacies throughout Clyde.
The extension of the successful project will take in 43 pharmacies, adding to the 200 already signed up to the scheme which has attracted thousands of people in Greater Glasgow who want to quit smoking.
Starting Fresh facilitators will be at Braehead promoting the initiative to the general public, handing out information leaflets and offering Carbon Monoxide testing to anyone who would like their levels tested.
Christine Alford, Public Health Pharmacy Facilitator, said:
“Smoking is the largest single cause of preventable ill health and premature death in the Clyde area and in Scotland.
“Half to two thirds of all regular smokers die prematurely from smoking-related disease.
“It’s another fact that 70 per cent of smokers would like to stop smoking. We in community pharmacy would like to help them, and so we have developed a network of community pharmacies across the Glasgow and Clyde area offering an easily accessible, cost effective smoking cessation service.”
Starting Fresh pharmacies offer free Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) products such as patches and gum to those exempt from NHS prescription charges.
Evidence suggests that this doubles the chances of smokers giving up.
Young people between the age of 12 and 17 years who want to stop smoking may also be eligible to receive support through the project.
Quit success rates four weeks after stopping so far have reached up to 38 per cent since the pharmacy initiative was launched in 2003.
A key factor in the success of the scheme is its “drop-in” approach, where clients can access NRT and support from their community pharmacy for up to 12 weeks.
Pharmacies are easily accessible with extended opening hours and in many cases open seven days a week.
No appointment is necessary to speak to the trained pharmacist or assistant to find out about the scheme.
People who want to become ex-smokers should pop along to their local pharmacy or freephone 0800 389 3210 for further information.
For more information contact NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde Communications on 0141 201 4429.
Smoking can also cause spontaneous abortion, premature birth and lower birth weight babies. It has also been implicated in increase sperm abnormalities and impotence in men.
It is responsible for 90% of cases of peripheral vascular disease leading to leg amputation.
It increases the risk of heart attack by 2–3 times, and by 10 times in women using oral contraceptives.
80% of lung cancer deaths. 17.1% of deaths from heart disease 80% of all cases of COPD (chronic lung disease making breathing difficult).
Tobacco smoking causes:
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