Smokers who want to quit their habit for good in 2014 are being offered help and support as part of a New Year, New You campaign being run by West Leicestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (WL CCG) this January.
The campaign, which is reaching out to people through social media channels, is also encouraging those taking up the challenge to post diary entries on WL CCG’s Facebook page to share their struggles and successes with other quitters.
Help and interactive tools for the New Year, New You campaign are just a click away on WL CCG’s website – www.westleicestershireccg.nhs.uk/newyear. There will be handy tips available through the CCG’s Facebook page, as well as to its Twitter followers, and support provided by the Leicestershire Stop Smoking Service and from community pharmacies.
Out of a population of around 366,000 people in West Leicestershire there are around 51,882 smokers. In 2010/11 there were 2,908 smoking-attributed hospital admissions. Smoking remains the biggest cause of preventable deaths in England, accounting for more than 80,000 deaths each year, and between 2008-2010 there were 1,527 deaths in West Leicestershire attributed to smoking.
Dr Chris Trzcinski, a GP and deputy chairman of WL CCG, said: “At this time of year many people make giving up smoking their top resolution for the New Year. Going it alone can be tough and you are up to four times more likely to quit successfully if you use a combination of stop smoking medicine and specialist help and support from your local NHS stop smoking service.
“By giving up, you are more likely to live for longer as well as improving your chance of having a disease-free, happier old age and protecting your loved-ones from the dangers of second-hand smoke.”
Louise Ross, of the Leicestershire STOP! Smoking service, added: “We can offer free advice on how best to give up smoking and put together an individually tailored 12-week plan which will give you your best chance of successfully quitting, using support from us, medication and the skills to stay smoke free.
“Every year we help around 7,000 people to stop smoking and we are hoping to provide help and support to as many people as possible during the New Year, New You campaign.”