Remember those chilling anti-smoking ads last year that seemed to create a media buzz because of their graphic nature. Well, they are back. A brand new series of stories of former smokers living with smoking-related diseases urge smokers to quit.
Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of health and human services, says the ads will run for at least 12 weeks on television, radio, billboards, online, and in theaters, magazines and newspapers nationwide. Funded by the Affordable Care Act’s Prevention and Public Health Fund, they tell the story of how people’s lives were changed forever due to their smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke.
The campaign feature smoking-related health conditions — including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, severe adult asthma and complications from diabetes, such as blindness, kidney failure, heart disease, and amputation — and candidly describe the losses from smoking and the gains from quitting.
“This campaign is saving lives and saving dollars by giving people the facts about smoking in an easy-to-understand way that encourages quitting,” Sebelius said. “The increase in calls to quit lines after last year’s campaign shows that more people are trying to quit smoking as a result of these ads.”
Despite the known dangers of tobacco use, nearly 1-in-5 U.S. adults still smoke. Almost 90 percent of smokers started before they were 18, and many of them experience life-changing health effects at a relatively early age, Sebelius said.
Among those featured in the campaign is James, who started smoking as a kid to be like his father. When James was told he had diabetes, he knew he had to stop smoking in order to better manage his health. This video is part of CDC’s campaign, Tips From Former Smokers.
Smokers can call 1-800-QUIT-NOW, a toll-free number to access ‘quit support’ across the country. Even if you have tried to quit smoking prior, keep quitting, please.