CHHC Education campaign returns with powerful stories to help Chicagoans quit smoking

Aug 13, 2015, 15:11 ET from Chicago Hispanic Health Coalition

CHICAGO, Aug. 13, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is airing its latest round of ads featuring real people who are living with the effects of smoking-related diseases. The newest ads in the Tips from Former Smokers campaign tell the story of how real people's lives were changed forever due to their smoking. Cancer is the leading cause of death among Hispanics, and tobacco use is an important risk factor for this disease.

In Illinois, 18,300 residents die every year from smoking-related diseases. Spanish and English language Tips ads will run through mid-August 2015 across the country on television, radio, billboards, online, and in theaters, magazines, and newspapers to raise awareness of the dangers of smoking. Two former Hispanic cigarette smokers, Rose and Felicita, are included in this group of ads. Rose developed lung cancer and Felicita developed gum disease and lost her teeth.

"These ads are effective in bringing to life the devastating effects of smoking, helping people quit and never start," says Esther Sciammarella, Executive Director of Chicago Hispanic Health Coalition. "At the Chicago Hispanic Health Coalition, we know all too well the terrible toll of smoking.  The CHHC is committed to helping Chicagoans know the reality of smoking-related disease and death – and to prevent these realities from happening to them."

The Tips ads feature smoking-related health conditions not commonly associated with cigarette use—including vision loss and colorectal cancer. Ads also highlight the benefits of quitting for loved ones, and the importance of quitting cigarettes completely, not just cutting down. They encourage smokers to call 1-800-QUIT NOW, a toll-free number to access free quitting support across the country, or visit to view the personal stories from the campaign and for free help quitting.

"All the Tips ad participants are heroes," said Tim McAfee, M.D., M.P.H., Senior Medical Officer in CDC's Office on Smoking and Health. "By courageously sharing their painful personal stories, they're inspiring millions of Americans to make the life-saving decision to quit smoking."

CHHC serves as one of 11 subnetwork lead agencies of the Nuestras Voces (Our Voices) National Hispanic Network to Reduce Tobacco-Related and Cancer Health Disparities. Nuestras Voces Network agencies are located throughout the U.S. and work to end tobacco use and the impact of cancer in Hispanic communities.

"As a Nuestras Voces Lead Agency, the CHHC wholeheartedly supports the Tips campaign and its effort to counter the more than $8 billion spent annually by the tobacco industry to make cigarettes more attractive and more affordable — particularly to our youth and young adults," added Sciammarella.

Smoking remains the leading cause of preventable death and disease in the United States. It kills about 480,000 Americans each year. For every person who dies from a smoking-related disease, about 30 more people suffer at least one serious illness from smoking. Nearly 70% of smokers say they want to quit, and this campaign provides them with information and resources to do so. For more information on the campaign, including free quit help, visit

About the Chicago Hispanic Health Coalition
The Chicago Hispanic Health Coalition was established in June 1991 as a multi-disciplinary membership organization to address the need to promote health and prevent disease among Chicago's Hispanic community. The Coalition's mission is to promote healthy behavior and prevent chronic disease. CHHC advances health education and disease prevention in the Hispanic community through coalition building and direct action. It seeks to empower the Hispanic community by providing a centralized forum for capacity building, coordination, policy and networking among health and human service providers and the communities they serve. For more information visit

About the Nuestras Voces Network
The Nuestras Voces Network empowers Hispanic communities and those who serve them to eliminate disparities in the areas of tobacco and cancer control. Areas of focus include decreasing exposure to second-hand tobacco smoke, increasing smoking cessation, increasing cancer prevention, and improving quality of life for those living with cancer. The Network collaborates with eleven regional subnetwork lead agencies to facilitate tobacco and cancer control trainings and technical assistance for community-based organizations, health care providers, businesses, and other stakeholders. This effort is funded through a multi-year cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). For more information visit

Contact: Edith Bosque Barnes, 312-842-2340

SOURCE Chicago Hispanic Health Coalition