NHS Gloucestershire helped almost 4,000 smokers quit their habit last year. 3,959 people quit from from April 2011 to the end March 2012 which is a record for Gloucestershire NHS Stop Smoking Service which was established in 2001.
Director of public health at NHS Gloucestershire, Dr Shona Arora said: “This is fantastic news for the Stop Smoking Service and more importantly for the residents who have quit the habit. If people consider changing their lifestyle in just one way then quitting smoking is a great one to start with. It can make a tremendous difference to your health and wellbeing.”
In Gloucestershire there are almost 900 deaths caused each year related to smoking. It is estimated that 17.6 per cent of adults smoke on a regular basis.
The Gloucestershire NHS Stop Smoking Service offers free support to help smokers quit their habit for good. This includes one-to-one or group sessions and access to Nicotine Replacement Therapy.
Support is available from pharmacies, children’s centres and workplaces and there are 200 advisers throughout the country.
Cheltenham local Rebecca Johns recently stopped smoking. She said: “I already feel so much better. My skin is clearer, my lungs healthier. I hope I can keep it up.”
Manager of the Stop Smoking Service, Elaine Watson said: “I’d like to congratulate all the smokers who quit with the service last year. We pride ourselves on being a welcoming, knowledgeable and friendly team. A number of our advisers are ex-smokers themselves so they can pass on some top tips for successfully stopping smoking.
“When you want to quit it can be hard to know where to start and it’s easy to get discouraged. Just one call or visit to the Gloucestershire Stop Smoking service can change that.”
Andrew Gravells, former smoker councilor and cabinet member for health and wellbeing for Gloucestershire County Council said: “Having been through the process of giving up cigarettes myself several years ago, I know how tough it can be to stop, and how important it is to get the right support.
“For some people like me it was an uphill struggle to give up, but it certainly pays to stick at it.”
Call 08454 220040 to contact the service or call in to the walk-in service available at the Stop Smoking Shop, Southgate Street, Gloucester.