Smokers having hard time giving up the vice urged to try Quit Line program » Manila Bulletin News



 By Chito A. Chavez

An anti-tobacco use group called on cigarette smokers having a difficult time giving up the vice to try the “Quit Line’’ program of the Department of Health (DOH) for their full recovery.

Calling it a vital link that will complete the government’s smoking cessation program, the New Vois Association of the Philippines (NVAP) urged smokers to take advantage of the smoking cessation program provided by the DOH for free instead of just merely brushing them off.

NVAP president Emer Rojas reminded them to value their health as a primary concern for the sake of their families and to make them enjoy life to the fullest.

“This has been the program you have been waiting for. No matter what is your reason for quitting, this is your best chance to start living a smoke-free life,” Rojas said.

Rojas said their reluctance to try the program may make them develop noncommunicable diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), lung cancer, heart ailments, hypertension, and diabetes,

“If they don’t quit, then, they take the risk and may end up as victims, like me, or even worse, die,” said Rojas, who is a former smoker and a laryngeal cancer survivor.

Earlier, the DOH launched the phone- and mobile-centered support services to help Filipino smokers quit tobacco.

Quitline is a hotline – 165364 – that smokers could call to receive real-time counseling and support through the phone.

(Mark Balmores /Manila Bulletin)

On the other hand, the mobile-based cessation program, which can be done via texting ‘STOPSMOKE’ to (29290)165364, will provide clients with text messages of support and guidance to quit smoking.

New Vois lauded the health department for coming up with such a program that aims to help smokers quit their deadly vices.

“Tobacco smoking is one of the single leading causes of death and diseases in the world. The Quitline is the final link to complete government support to the NCD prevention program of the country,” said Rojas.

“We congratulate Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial for a job well done,” he added.

Rojas said their group is confident that many Filipinos would patronize the DOH Quit Line.

 “We are sure of the success of the Quitline since most smokers now wants” to quit this deadly addiction,” Rojas said.

 Based on the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) – Philippines 2015, over 76 percent of the respondents are interested in quitting.

 Over 56 percent of the GATS – Philippines 2015 respondents also said they have been advised to quit smoking by their health care providers.

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