December 30, 2019

State of Alabama
Press Release: Public Health, Alabama Department of

Get a healthy start in 2020 with the Alabama Tobacco Quitline

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Monica Moore
(334) 206-3824

Ringing in the New Year is often seen as a chance to get a fresh start. As we approach the beginning of a new decade, the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) encourages Alabama’s smokers to start a healthier, tobacco- and vape-free life with the help of the Alabama Tobacco Quitline.

Using the Alabama Tobacco Quitline is simple: Alabama residents can call 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) or visit quitnowalabama.com for free help.

“Many people make that New Year’s resolution to quit smoking, but too often they try to do it by themselves and end up failing,” said ADPH Tobacco Prevention and Control Program cessation manager Monica Moore. “What we’re offering through the Quitline is an improved chance at success because you’re going to get the support you need to succeed.”

That support includes individualized coaching services available over the telephone or online seven days a week from 6 a.m. to midnight. Residents who are medically eligible and enrolled in the Quitline program can also receive up to eight weeks of free nicotine replacement therapy (NRT).

Moore said using the Quitline will not only provide immediate health benefits to the smoker, but to the smoker’s family, friends, and co-workers as well.

“Children exposed to secondhand smoke see an increased risk in sudden infant death syndrome and respiratory infections, among other things,” Moore said. “Adults can see their risk of stroke and lung and heart disease grow because of secondhand smoke as well.

“With the Quitline, we’re offering a chance to not only improve and protect your own health, but the health of your loved ones also.”

In Alabama, 19.2 percent of adults are smokers compared to the national rate of 16.1 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) 2018 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. Smoking is the number one cause of preventable death and disease in the nation, and kills more than 8,600 adults in Alabama each year. Annually, the state spends more than $1.88 billion in health care costs directly caused by smoking.

Concern over the use of e-cigarettes and vaping products is growing as the CDC continues to investigate a national outbreak of lung disease associated with e-cigarettes and vaping products. As of December 10, over 2,400 cases of e-cigarette or vaping product use associated lung injury have been reported to the CDC from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the U.S. territories Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. ADPH has confirmed 13 cases of this lung disease as of December 26. One Alabama resident has died due to this lung disease.

For additional information on electronic cigarettes and their health effects, visit www.cdc.gov/tobacco/basic_information/e-cigarettes/index.htm. For more information on quitting tobacco, please visit ADPH Tobacco Prevention and Control at alabamapublichealth.gov/tobacco.

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12/30/19



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