HARRISBURG, Pa., Nov. 16, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Department of Health is encouraging smokers to use the 36th Annual Great American Smokeout, a Nov. 17 event sponsored by the American Cancer Society, to become tobacco-free for life.
"Quitting smoking can be challenging, but your chances for success increase with help and support," said Secretary of Health Dr. Eli Avila. "The department provides many services designed to help smokers quit for good. We encourage Pennsylvanians to use Nov. 17 as the first step to living a longer and healthier life."
A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that nearly 70 percent of American adult smokers say they want to quit, and 52 percent have tried to quit within the past year.
The Department of Health provides tobacco prevention and cessation services online at www.DeterminedToQuit.com. The site features an online quit companion, along with other resources and tips designed to help quitters succeed.
Pennsylvania also offers a free "quitline" at 800-QUIT-NOW (800-784-8669), where trained staff help callers develop and carry out a plan to quit smoking. The service offers Pennsylvania residents one-on-one coaching as well as ongoing support and resources.
Smoking continues to be the nation's leading cause of preventable disease and death. According to the American Cancer Society, nearly one in every five deaths nationwide is related to smoking. Tobacco use causes more deaths each year than alcohol, car accidents, suicide, AIDS, homicide and illegal drugs combined.
For additional resources and more information about tobacco prevention and control programs in Pennsylvania, visit www.health.state.pa.us.
Media contacts: Christine Cronkright or Holli Senior, 717-787-1783
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Health