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Use Quitline to kick habit, cancer survivors urge smokers

A group of cancer survivors urged smokers to take of advantage of the Department of Health (DOH)’s free smoking cessation program Quitline, particularly those who are having difficulty quitting tobacco. File

 

MANILA, Philippines - A group of cancer survivors urged smokers to take of advantage of the Department of Health (DOH)’s free smoking cessation program Quitline, particularly those who are having difficulty quitting tobacco.

New Vois Association of the Philippines (NVAP) said the newly launched Quitline of the DOH is a vital link that will help many smokers finally stop smoking for their own good.

Quitline is the hotline 165364, which smokers can call to receive real-time counseling and support through the phone.

It also includes a mobile-based cessation program, which can be done via texting “STOPSMOKE” to (29290)165364. Clients will receive messages of support and guidance to quit smoking.

“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,” said NVAP president Emer Rojas, a former smoker and laryngeal cancer survivor.

He also reminded that smokers have greater risks of developing non-communicable diseases (NCD), such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer, heart ailments, hypertension and diabetes.

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“If they don’t quit, then, they take the risk and may end up as victims, like me, or even worse, die,” he added.

Based on the Global Adult Tobacco Survey - Philippines 2015, over 76 percent of smokers are interested in quitting while 56 percent were told by their doctors to stop smoking. \ 

NVAP commended the DOH for coming up with the Quitline.

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

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