Smokers are being challenged to take part in Stoptober – the mass quitting challenge from Public Health England starting on 1 October – and join the nearly 15 million people across the country who have already quit.
The smoking rate across the North East has fallen from 29% of people smoking in 2005 to 22% smoking in 2012 and 18.7% smoking in 2015 – a drop of 3.3% over the past four years and around 189,000 fewer smokers in the last decade.
Alongside this, according to the latest data from Nielsen, the number of cigarettes sold in the North East also dropped by 13.01% in 2015.
Last year, out of the 2.5 million smokers who made a quit attempt, 500,000 people (20%) were successful – the highest recorded success rate and up from just 13.6% six years ago.
Joanna Feeney, the South Tees stop smoking service team lead, said: “This Stoptober we are raising awareness of Carbon Monoxide and are encouraging all smokers to ‘Know your CO’ and see the immediate benefit of quitting. There are many reasons to stop smoking and the Stop Smoking Service is here to help and our advisors can talk through all the different options available to make quitting easier.”
For information and support on stopping smoking, contact your local Stop Smoking Service (Middlesbrough, Redcar and Cleveland, Stockton-On-Tees and Hartlepool) on 01642 383 819, visit www.nth.nhs.uk/services/stop-smoking-service/ or ask at your GP surgery or pharmacy.