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Archive Index / Volusia County Health Department and Tobacco Free Florida Observe the 36th Annual Great American Smokeout (Posted: 11/15/11)
Source: Volusia County Health Department
Contact: Stefany Strong, Public Information Officer
DAYTONA BEACH - Thursday, November 17th, marks the 36th Great American Smokeout, sponsored by the American Cancer Society. The Volusia County Health Department, the Florida Department of Health and Tobacco Free Florida are observing this event by encouraging Floridians to commit to being tobacco-free for 24 hours on Thursday.
The Great American Smokeout challenges smokers to plan in advance to quit smoking that day, or to use the day to make a plan to quit. A comprehensive quit plan is an essential part of a successful quit attempt. The event raises awareness about the dangers of smoking and the many effective resources available to successfully quit.
On November 17th 2011, the Volusia County Health Department will be participating in an on campus event at the Daytona State College with a table display and a presentation to students.
“Tobacco education to our youth is imperative to help save a generation,” says Dr. Bonnie J. Sorensen, director of the Volusia County Health Department. “That is why participation in the Great American Smokeout is so important.”
Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of disease and premature death in the United States. Cigarette use alone results in an estimated 28,700 deaths in Florida each year. Despite the known dangers of smoking, more than 2.5 million Floridians, or 17.1 percent of the adult population, are current cigarette smokers.
But there’s good news, from 2007 to 2010, the smoking rate for adults in Florida decreased by 18.6 percent, resulting in nearly 500,000 fewer smokers. About 64 percent of adults in the state who have ever smoked have quit and there are more former smokers in Florida than current smokers.
Seven out of 10 adult smokers report that they want to quit completely. In 2010, 52.8 percent of cigarette smokers in Florida made a quit attempt. Those who weren’t successful should continue trying because most former smokers make several attempts before finally quitting permanently. In fact, the average smoker attempts to quit between eight and 11 times before ultimately quitting for good.
“The Great American Smokeout is a motivating event that’s sponsored by the American Cancer Society, an invaluable partner in our efforts to support current tobacco users to quit,” said Kim Berfield, Deputy Secretary for the Florida Department of Health. “We encourage Floridians to make this day the day they commit to quit smoking, the most important step they can take for a healthier and longer life.”
Tobacco Free Florida offers a number of free and convenient resources to help smokers quit.
- Phone: Call the Florida Quitline at 1-877-U-CAN-NOW to speak with a Quit Coach who will help you assess your addiction and help you create a personalized quit plan.
- Online: Enroll in the Web Coach®, which will help you create your own web-based quit plan that’s right for you, visit https://www.quitnow.net/florida.
- In-person: Visit the Florida Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) Network’s website, http://ahectobacco.com, to locate your local AHEC and sign up for Quit Smoking Now group classes.
ABOUT TOBACCO FREE FLORIDA
Tobacco Free Florida (TFF) is a statewide cessation and prevention campaign funded by Florida’s tobacco settlement fund. The program is managed by the Florida Department of Health, specifically the Bureau of Tobacco Prevention Program. TFF’s mission is to combat the pervasive problem of tobacco use in the Sunshine State, where each year, more than 28,000 Floridians die from smoking and tobacco-related diseases cost the state an estimated $19.6 billion in healthcare costs and lost productivity.
Since its inception in February 2008, TFF has reached millions of Floridians through advertising, grassroots initiatives, social media, and public relations efforts as a means of providing information and offer resources to help tobacco users quit. Smokers and smokeless tobacco users interested in quitting are encouraged to call the Florida Quitline at 1-877-U-CAN-NOW to speak with a quit coach. To learn about TFF and the state’s free quit smoking resources, visit www.tobaccofreeflorida.com or follow the campaign on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/TobaccoFreeFlorida or Twitter at http://twitter.com/tobaccofreefla.
Page last updated: 11/15/11