November 19th is the American Cancer Society’s Great American Smokeout. This day encourages people to quit smoking cigarettes by starting with day one. As we continue to see the cases of COVID-19 increase both nationally and locally, protecting our health is so important.

The CDC recently changed their COVID-19 websites to indicate that adults who currently smoke cigarettes or adults who have a history of smoking cigarettes are at an increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19. Earlier it was indicated that there may be an increased risk of COVID-19 for those who smoke cigarettes. We are now seeing indications that smoking cigarettes and a history of smoking cigarettes does have an impact on the risk of COVID-19.

We realize quitting smoking during a time of immense stress can be difficult. However, making a plan to quit and getting support can help keep you on track with your cessation goals. For help creating a plan and for free support, contact the Indiana Tobacco Quitline at 1-800-QUIT-NOW or by visiting quitnowindiana.com. You can also visit the coalition’s Facebook page for more information on the Indiana Tobacco Quitline and for tips to help you quit. Just search KCTPCC on Facebook to find us.

As we continue to deal with the pandemic, the coalition hopes that everyone will take the recommended precautions, such as washing your hands, wearing a mask, and social distancing, and for those who smoke we hope they will call the Indiana Tobacco Quitline or speak to their healthcare provider about quitting.

We hope that everyone stays safe during these times, reaches out for help when needed, and protects their health by quitting smoking and avoiding secondhand smoke.

Sincerely,

Krystle Russell, Knox County Tobacco Prevention and Cessation Coalition

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