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WHO launches 'Commit to Quit' marathon to help smokers to quit

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WHO launches Commit to Quit marathon to help smokers to quit
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As tobacco users have higher chances of developing severe disease and death from COVID-19, WHO has launched a global campaign to celebrate the World No Tobacco Day 2021 under the slogan "Commit to Quit".

The goal of the campaign is to help 100 million people quit tobacco use through various initiatives and digital tools.

"Smokers have up to a 50 per cent higher risk of developing severe disease and death from COVID-19, so quitting is the best thing they can do to lower their risk from coronavirus, as well as the risk of developing cancers, heart diseases and respiratory illnesses," said WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus in a statement released on Saturday.

"We urge all countries to play their part by joining the WHO campaign and creating tobacco-free environments that give people the information, support and tools they need to quit and quit for good," he added.

WHO has launched the campaign to support those millions of tobacco users who are actively willing to give up this habit, but still need help to succeed. In less than 5 months into the year-long campaign, WHO has freely distributed the quitting toolkit to more than a billion tobacco users.

The campaign works directly with 29 focus countries, wherein each country work with WHO on selected activities, including, running national awareness campaigns, releasing new digital tools, revising policies, engaging youth, training health workers, opening new cessation clinics, supporting nicotine replacement therapies through WHO partners, establishing national toll-free quitlines, and much more.

The "Quit Challenge" gives daily notifications of tips and encouragement through WhatsApp, Viber, Facebook Messenger and WeChat for up to 6 months to help people remain tobacco-free.

Director-General's Tobacco Control Awards Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has given special recognition awards for tobacco control to the Minister of Health and Family Welfare of India, Dr Harsh Vardhan and to the Tobacco Control Research Group at the University of Bath, UK.

According to the statement, Dr Harsha Vardhan was instrumental in the 2019 national legislation that bans E-cigarettes and heated tobacco products (HTPs) in India.

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TAGS:WHO Tobacco users Covid19 
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