Over the past 12 months, around 3,000 people have given up smoking in Leicestershire.
Now, from today (Jan 3), the county council’s new Quit Ready service is up-and-running for people who want to add their name to the welcome statistic.
Quit Ready Leicestershire offers free and confidential text, phone and web chat advice and, for more details, visit www.quitready.co.uk or call 0345 646 66 66.
Councillor Ernie White, the county council’s cabinet member for health, said: “Quitting smoking is often the single, most effective way of improving health and preventing illness, which are our key priorities. Our smoking rates are lower than the national average which is encouraging news, but we’d like to further reduce the figure.”
Advisors from Quit Ready Leicestershire will be in touch - via telephone, text message, web chat or email - to offer support on a weekly basis during the 12-week programme to ensure people have the best possible chance of staying smoke-free. The service runs from Mondays to Fridays (9am to 7pm) and on Saturdays (10am-2pm).
Quit Ready service manager Zaheera Chatra said: “The new year is the most popular time for people to quit smoking. Around half a million people will attempt it, and evidence shows they are four times more likely to stop smoking through support and pharmacotherapy.
"There is also a lot of evidence that, within a very short period of time, people quitting smoking start to notice improvements such as improving senses of taste and smell, easier breathing and more energy."
The new service also acknowledges the significant increase in the use of e-cigarettes,which the service doesn’t provide, but behavioural support is on offer to people who use e-cigarettes.
People can also self-refer using the online contact form found on the website and the service is particularly keen to support women who are pregnant, or people who have other health problems.