A campaign to encourage Oklahomans to stop smoking and using tobacco products will be emphasized during the week of Jan. 18-Jan. 25.
That week has been declared as Oklahoma, It’s Time to Quit Week by the governor.
“Tobacco kills more than 7,500 Oklahomans every year,” according to a spokesman for the campaign.
“Dozens of hospitals, businesses and organizations across the state participate in the annual campaign to encourage Oklahomans to stop using tobacco products,” the spokesman continued.
The campaign is also designed to raise awareness about tools and resources available to help Oklahomans to quit, the spokesman pointed out.
“Tobacco use still remains the single, largest preventable cause of disease and death in the Oklahoma,” said Oklahoma Hospital Association president Patti Davis. “Tobacco users are dealing with an addiction,” she said.
“On top of that, they’re trying to change a behavior and a habit that they have likely engaged in for more than half their lives.”
Guiding Right, which has a tobacco control program, is working with other organizations involved in the campaign.
The Center for Black Health & Equity is the leading nationally-recognized public health organizations working to fight against tobacco use.
Specifically, that agency is engaged in the fight against marketing and sales of menthol tobacco products.
“menthol tobacco products is a social justice issue,” a spokesman for the agency said.
“Menthol and other flavored tobacco products re unethically marketed in Black communities.”
The spokesman made these points:
- Tobacco kills more than 45,000 African Americans each year.
- 70% of African Americans who smoke want to quit.
“Talk to your doctor today and find out what tobacco treatments are available for you,” a spokesman for the campaign stated. “If you don’t have health insurance, there are still resources that are available to you.
“In fact, free quit coaching and support to help tobacco users navigate their quit journey along with a free two-week supply of gum, patches or lozenges is available to any Oklahoman through the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline, 1(800) QUIT NOW.