A new online NHS stop smoking clinic has been launched in partnership with Evapo, one of the UK’s largest vaping retailers, in a move to help smokers quit from the comfort of their own home.
The new confidential service, which has been launched during VApril, the vaping sector’s national consumer education and awareness month organised by the UK Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA), is based at Grovehill Pharmacy NHS Stop Smoking Clinic and offers free virtual consultations with stop smoking practitioners, certified by the National Centre of Smoking Cessation and Training.
Smokers who book a telephone or video conferencing consultation will be equipped with a personalised treatment plan, including a quit target date, options for vaping products and nicotine replacement therapies and access to medications to reduce smoking urges. Specialist advisers will also provide an understanding of their smoking addictions and be available to offer weekly and fortnightly telephone and email support. Consultations can either be one or two way depending on the preference of the smoker.
Since 2015, the community pharmacy has helped over 500 people successfully quit smoking, making it the leading stop smoking services in Hertfordshire. It was also one of the first pharmacies to include vaping in its treatment and in 2019 carried out a clinical trial on the use of vaping for smoking cessation, recording a 60% quit rate. The clinic now hopes that offering the same treatment digitally will help more smokers across the UK to quit.
James Cameron at Grovehill Pharmacy NHS Stop Smoking Clinic said, “Face-to-face support dramatically increases the chances of successfully quitting smoking. With the launch of our online stop smoking clinic, we can now expand the capacity and reach of our service to offer specialist stop smoking treatment to people in their own homes.
“As access to advice for smokers looking to give up cigarettes is hindered by the current Coronavirus lockdown, the service will also provide vital support during these challenging times.”
Andrej Kuttruf, founder of Evapo and director at the UK Vaping Industry Association, said: “It’s great to be involved in a public health venture where vaping forms a central part of the treatment plan to support smokers looking to quit.
“Recognised by Public Health England as 95% less harmful than conventional cigarettes, vaping is widely acknowledged as one of the most effective ways to stop smoking and has helped over 3 million smokers in the UK to successfully quit, according to Action on Smoking Health. Expert advice is vital when making the transition from smoking to vaping, which is why we are delighted to be involved in this initiative as part of VApril national vaping awareness month.
James Cameron, NHS Stop Smoking Adviser, added: “There hasn’t been a better time than the current coronavirus lockdown for smokers to direct their mental energies to something they most think about, which is quitting cigarettes. Our clinic provides the opportunity to do so.”
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