Pennsylvania Health Department Urges Smokers to Quit During 35th Annual 'Great American Smokeout' on Nov. 18

Nov 17, 2010, 14:23 ET from Pennsylvania Department of Health

Quit Resources, Tips Available at

HARRISBURG, Pa., Nov. 17, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Department of Health offers support to help Pennsylvania smokers give up tobacco during the 35th annual Great American Smokeout on Nov. 18, an event sponsored by the American Cancer Society.  

"Pennsylvania has made great strides in reducing tobacco use in adults with rates showing a nearly five percent decrease since 2003," said acting Secretary of Health Michael Huff. "Even though quitting is difficult, managing a potential disease that results from smoking will be much more difficult."

Today, approximately 20 percent of adult Pennsylvanians smoke cigarettes – about the same as the national smoking rate.

Cigarette smoking continues to be the leading cause of preventable disease and death in the United States. According to the American Cancer Society, nearly one of every five deaths nationwide is related to smoking. Cigarettes kill more Americans than alcohol, car accidents, suicide, AIDS, homicide, and illegal drugs combined.

The Department of Health provides tobacco prevention and cessation services throughout the commonwealth to individuals who want to quit smoking through The website features an online quit companion, along with other resources and tips designed to help quitters remain tobacco free.

In addition, Pennsylvania offers a free "quitline" at 1-800-QUIT-NOW. Individuals that receive support during their quit attempts are much more likely to succeed.  

"Research shows smokers – on average - try to quit at least seven times before they succeed," added Huff. "We encourage Pennsylvanians to use Nov. 18 as their first step to reaching their goal of becoming tobacco-free."

For additional resources and more information about tobacco prevention and control programs in Pennsylvania, visit

Media contact: Holli Senior, 717-787-1783

SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Health