Laura Sharman 04 May 2020

Around 300,000 quit smoking due to coronavirus

Around 300,000 quit smoking due to coronavirus image

Council leaders have welcomed figures that show around 300,000 people have quit smoking due to an increased risk from coronavirus.

The survey, conducted in partnership with Action on Smoking and Health (ASH), also found a further 550,000 people have tried to quit, with 2.4 million cutting down the amount they smoke.

Evidence suggests that smokers in hospital who have coronavirus are at a higher risk than non-smokers of severe illness.

Deborah Arnott, chief executive of ASH, said: ‘Covid-19 is making everyone much more concerned about staying healthy, and for people who smoke that means quitting.

’This survey shows that Covid-19 has increased the desire of many smokers to quit. It is important that health professionals are still able to offer them the support they need to give them the best chance to succeed.’

Cllr Ian Hudspeth, chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said: 'Smokers are at particular risk of COVID-19 and it is encouraging that so many have quit the habit for good.

'We need to continue to support people to give up smoking altogether, both through the current crisis and beyond, if we are to save lives both in the immediate and longer-term.'

The power of local systems to save lives image

The power of local systems to save lives

Councils and their partners could do even more to contain the spread of COVID-19 if properly funded to undertake a robust localised system of testing, tracking and tracing, argues Professor Donna Hall.
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