Pharmacists and stop smoking teams in Greater Glasgow and Clyde have been praised for helping some of the most heavily addicted smokers in their area kick the habit.
The hard work of pharmacists and other stop smoking staff has meant that NHSGGC has exceeded its government target for helping smokers in the most deprived areas to give up smoking.
NHSGGC’s Director of Public Health Linda de Caestecker said: “These are not people who have the occasional cigarette. We are talking about people whose first thought in the morning was smoking – people who had perhaps smoked for decades. Through a combination of medications, nicotine replacement treatment, advice and support groups a total of 2,015* ex smokers are now living smoke free.
“My thanks go to stop smoking and Pharmacy staff who deliver Quit Your Way services for their great work in helping people in their area stop smoking and stay smoke-free at three months.”
Despite the continuing drop in smoking rates, smoking remains the biggest single preventable cause of ill-health and premature death in Scotland. NHSGGC Quit Your Way services are committed to helping those that want to stop smoking to successfully do so. Half of smokers want to quit for good, while a third of deaths amongst those aged 35 to 69 in Greater Glasgow and Clyde are caused by smoking.
Dr de Caestecker said: “I am delighted with these new figures – each one of these 2,015 quits is an individual success story and a new chapter in that person’s life, with immediate improvements to their health. On the day someone gives up smoking their risk of a heart attack immediately reduces, and continues to decline.
“Every year, around 10,000 people use NHSGGC’s Quit Your Way services in a bid to kick their smoking habit – enough to fill Hampden stadium.
“Our Quit Your Way services are helping to drive down smoking rates. Our Services provide vital life-saving services for smokers addicted to tobacco and offer the best way of helping people to stop smoking and to stay smoke-free. The service is called Quit Your Way as it takes into account individual circumstances and the treatments that people feel suit them best.”
Tobacco use accounts for almost one in four of all deaths in Scotland, is responsible for around 33,500 hospital admissions annually and costs the NHS around £400 million every year to treat smoking-related illnesses.
Dr de Caestecker added: “We know quitting smoking isn’t easy, but we offer world class stop smoking services in a wide range of areas including community venues, in all pharmacies, in our acute, maternity and mental health hospitals.
“Anyone looking for help to give up smoking can access a wide variety of services to suit their needs by visiting the Quit Your Way section of the NHSGGC website: http://www.nhsggc.org.uk/your-health/healthy-living/smokefree/quit-your-way/quit-your-way-support/. Good luck!”
*While these figures have been verified by NHSGGC they still await verification from ISD Scotland.
For more information contact: NHSGGC press office on 0141 201 4429 or [email protected]