Residents in Croydon can get help from the council’s free health and wellbeing programme to quit smoking and reduce their risks of severe symptoms if they get Covid-19.
In response to the pandemic, anyone over 16 years old is being offered one-to-one support from Croydon Live Well advisers during a focused 12-week stop smoking programme.
The advisers are available on the phone number 0800 019 8570 and email, firstname.lastname@example.org. There is also online advice and free tools to quit smoking on the council’s health website www.justbecroydon.org/be-smoke-free/ .
Croydon Council is also endorsing the Quit for Covid campaign, where Public Health England, the Chief Medical Officer and The Association of Directors of Public Health are calling for people to stop smoking to protect themselves and others.
Although there are now fewer cases of coronavirus in the borough, smokers still have a higher risk of becoming seriously ill if they contract the virus, as smoking damages the lungs, weakens the immune system and causes a range of severe respiratory problems.
Quitting smoking quickly improves your circulation, breathing and reduces the risks of other long term health problems such as heart attacks and stroke.
In the longer term, quitting is also linked to reduced depression, anxiety, and stress and improved positive mood and quality of life compared with continuing to smoke.
“We are supporting the Quit for Covid campaign as there has never been a more important time to quit smoking than right now. It is never too late to see the health benefits of stopping smoking. Many smokers try several times before they succeed, but getting the best available local support to quit and using stop smoking aids to help ease the cravings gives you a much better chance of success.”
Councillor Janet Campbell, cabinet member for families, health and social care
Rachel Flowers, Croydon’s Director of Public Health, said: “Emerging evidence suggests that smoking puts people more at risk from severe complications from Covid-19. This is a worrying time for many of us and we are all conscious of the need to protect ourselves, to protect others. Quitting smoking is a very good way to do this, along with washing our hands, good respiratory hygiene and good physical distancing.”