Local health experts are encouraging smokers in Blackpool to contact the newly established NHS Tobacco Addiction Service.
The service is operated by Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and funded by Blackpool Council. It aims to play its part in reducing smoking prevalence and ill-health in Blackpool by offering up to 12-weeks free support and stop smoking medications to local smokers who set a quit date.
Smoking remains the leading cause of premature death, killing nearly 80,000 people a year in England. For every person who dies from smoking, at least 30 live with a smoking-related condition such as cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes and COPD. Current smokers are also 30% more likely to be admitted to hospital.
Stopping smoking can be difficult for most people but with a combination of one-to-one support and free medications from the NHS, people are significantly more likely to quit for good. It’s the one-to-one support than can make the difference as by attending weekly appointments it help service users stay on track with their quit attempt. Local health experts are encouraging Blackpool residents to make a switch to a healthier lifestyle:
Dr Tarek Saba, Consultant Respiratory Physician, Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Stopping smoking is the single most important thing you can do for your health. When you stop smoking, it’s not just your heart and lungs that benefit; it’s about your brain, liver, kidneys, your skin and blood pressure. It’s also about how you feel about yourself and how other people feel about you. The benefits from stopping smoking start to arrive within minutes of quitting and continue for years.
“My advice to Blackpool smokers is to contact the Blackpool NHS Tobacco Addiction Service and discuss setting a quit date. Evidence tells us that the chances of quitting increase significantly with a combination of specialist support and the free medications on offer.”
Dr Arif Rajpura, Director of Public Health, Blackpool Council, added: “Smoking prevalence in adults (2019) estimates that 23.4% of the population of Blackpool smoke, which is significantly higher than 13.9% of the population of England who do.
“Blackpool Council have continued to prioritise and invest in a range of support and interventions in order to help people to quit smoking and we believe the Blackpool NHS Tobacco Addiction Service will make a tremendous difference to lessen this figure and improve lives.
“The service will encompass positive quit smoking messages and bespoke support for all Blackpool residents.
“This positive progress takes us closer to achieving a substantial reduction in adult smoking prevalence here in Blackpool through a service which offers an integrated, safe, effective and person-centred provision. Which is of the highest possible quality to ensure it contributes to improving the health of our population and tackles health inequalities.”
Blackpool residents can call free on 0808 196 4324 between 9-5 Monday to Friday to discuss the local stop smoking support on offer.