Sheffield City Council’s Smokefree Sheffield initiative is supporting a new campaign ‘Today is the Day’, which encourages smokers to quit.

The new campaign, launched by Action on Smoking and Health (ASH), features a heartfelt plea from respiratory doctor Ruth Sharrock for smokers to quit today to protect themselves from smoking-related diseases and increased risk of severe illness from Covid-19. Smoking is the largest cause of preventable death in Sheffield, responsible for over 795 deaths a year and every year a further 939 children take up smoking in the local area.

Greg Fell, Director for Public Health Sheffield said:

“Smoking remains the biggest killer in Sheffield, and we want to encourage all smokers to give quitting a go.

“Quitting smoking can rapidly reduce your risk of a range of life-threatening illnesses and our dedicated local stop smoking service can help support you through your quit attempt with expert advice and medications to deal with cravings.

“Please visit the Smokefree Sheffield website to access local support. The service is very much open for business and ready to support you in your quit attempt.”

Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit, 92,681 smokers in Yorkshire and The Humber have quit smoking, according to new analysis by ASH and University College London.

Councillorr Mary Lea, Cabinet Member for Culture, Parks and Leisure at Sheffield City Council, said:

“The coronavirus pandemic has made us all conscious of the need to protect ourselves, our families and our loved ones. If you smoke, now is the time to quit to keep yourself healthy.

“It’s never too late! Quit and experience amazing health benefits, even if you are already unwell. Quitting smoking is the best thing smokers can do to improve their health, and so I’m proud to be supporting the ‘Today is the Day’ campaign.”

Deborah Arnott Chief Executive of ASH said:

“Over 92,000 smokers have succeeded in stopping smoking in Yorkshire and The Humber since COVID-19 hit us, but that still leaves many thousands more smokers who have not. This campaign is designed to encourage those who’ve not yet succeeded, to wake up and decide today is the day to stop smoking.”

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