Cut Out the Middle Man – New Stop Smoking Service
A new service to help smokers wanting to quit smoking to access treatment without going to their GP is now available in Forth Valley. The programme, which effectively cuts out the middle man, is provided at St Ninian’s Health Centre in Stirling on Wednesday evenings from 5pm to 7pm.
Through this service the stop-smoking medication Champix can be dispensed without the need for a prescription from your GP – as long as people are suitable for this type of treatment. Checks will be carried out by a pharmacist/prescriber who will take into account any health conditions for which Champix is not recommended.
NHS Lead Smoking Cessation Nurse Specialist Gillian Bruce said:
This is an exciting opportunity for all smokers looking to quit to access treatment and support without the need to wait for a GP appointment. It means that once they have decided they’d like to stop they can strike while the iron’s hot.”
Champix tablets contain the active ingredient varenicline, which is a medicine used to assist people who are addicted to nicotine to give up smoking. Varenicline helps with the cravings and withdrawal symptoms that some smokers experience while they are trying to quit and also prevents any nicotine inhaled in cigarette smoke from having a rewarding and enjoyable effect.
Champix is not the same as nicotine replacement therapy which will still be available free through stop smoking clinics and community pharmacies across Forth Valley.
The NHS Forth Valley Stop Smoking Service is reporting considerable success, already exceeding Government targets. From January to December 2011 staff in Forth Valley supported 719 men and 995 women to quit smoking.
It’s estimated that around 60,000 adults in Forth Valley are smokers. The 25-34 age group has the highest number of smokers although 4% of 13 year olds and 12% of l5 year olds are regular smokers, smoking one or more cigarettes per week.
Figures prove that people are more likely to stop smoking for at least a month if they use a combination of stop smoking services and products, rather than going it alone.
Smokers looking for further information should contact Smokeline on 0800 84 84 84 or visit www.nhsforthvalley.com