ON Monday February 8, Smokefree Solihull will be launching a new strategy to tackle the biggest killer in the borough. Smoking.
Smoking is the leading preventable cause of death locally and kills over 80,000 people in the UK every year.
At the launch, representatives from Solihull NHS Care Trust, Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council, West Midlands Fire Service, HM Revenue and Customs, Scambusters and local charities will be meeting local councillors to discuss tobacco issues and drive the new strategy forward.
The main aims of the strategy will be to encourage smokers to stop smoking, protect babies and young children form breathing harmful tobacco smoke, stop young people from starting to smoke and tackle illicit tobacco sales across the borough.
Smoking causes around 50 diseases and costs the NHS in Solihull around £12 million to treat every year. The new approach will work on several levels to tackle all the problems that tobacco causes in the local community.
Secondhand smoke causes asthma, ear infections and cot death and illicit tobacco sales undermine smokers’ attempts to quit as well as costing the Government around £2.7 billion in lost revenue that could be spent on hospitals and schools.
Denise Milnes, Smokefree Co-ordinator at Solihull NHS Care Trust said, “The focus for the new approach is very much on families and young people and we have seen that children that grow up in smoky homes suffer a collection of health problems and are more likely to become smokers.”
For free local help to stop smoking, phone Solihull NHS Stop Smoking Service on 0800 015 8512.