Save your lungs and quit now for World No Tobacco Day

March 31 is World No Tobacco Day. Picture: JGI/Tom Grill

Ahead of World No Tobacco Day this Sunday, and with early research showing people who smoke are at higher risk of developing more severe COVID-19 infections, there has never been a better time to quit.

Smokers in Western Sydney are reminded of local support services which are available to guide and support them through quitting. 

Mount Druitt Community Health Centre and your local GP have the support you need, according to Western Sydney Local Health District (WSLHD) Population Health deputy director Christine Newman.

“Now more than ever we need to look after our health, especially our lung health with the risk of COVID-19,” Christine said.

“There is no safe form of tobacco consumption. Young people in particular may be lured into trends, such as vaping or shisha, but any form of smoking is damaging to your health.

“Quit now and you will notice the benefits immediately.”

Data from NSW’s quit support services indicate smokers are taking this opportunity to quit.

During March and April, visits to the iCanQuit website increased by 68 per cent compared to the same period last year. At the same time, there was also a 19 per cent increase in calls handled by the NSW Quitline.

In 2019-20 the NSW Government is investing $17.3 million on tobacco control programs.

In 2019, 11.2 per cent of adults aged 16 years or older in NSW smoked daily. This is a decline in smoking from 14.2 per cent in 2009 and has been relatively stable since 2015. Daily and occasional smoking combined was 15.5 per cent in 2019.

For information, tips and tools to support people to quit visit www.iCanQuit.com.au, call NSW Quitline on 13 7848 or talk to a health care professional.

Read more about COVID-19 www.health.nsw.gov.au/coronavirus and smoking and COVID-19 www.icanquit.com.au/coronavirus.