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Quitline: We won't quit on you!

Quitline: We won't quit on you!

Quitline is preparing for an influx of callers due to the 10% tobacco tax increase, which comes into effect on Monday, 1 January 2018.

The price increase of tobacco, coupled with people wanting to quit smoking as part of a New Year’s resolution, means Quitline expects its phones and website to be running hot over the New Year period. Quitline is ready to help.

Quitline staff are ready to help with a free service, operating 24/7, and has a range of programmes to help people quit in a non-judgmental way.

CEO Andrew Slater says Christmas and New Year can be particularly hard for smokers who are wanting to quit because it can be a stressful and social time.

"We know quitting smoking can be difficult. One thing smokers won’t have to worry about is Quitline’s support - we are ready and waiting for your calls," Mr Slater says.

Quitline is anticipating about double the number of calls over the New Year period and staff numbers will be bolstered to deal with the increase.

"We know tax increases get people’s attention and motivates them to want to quit. The biggest thing we can do is keep your quit attempt alive," Mr Slater says.

QUITLINE CAN:
- Invite people to register online at www.quit.org.nz
- Answer calls 24/7
- Give callers good reasons to quit
- Provide ongoing support and callback messages
- Share inspirational stories from others
- Provide a forum to chat to others who are going through the same thing
- Let people know how to help others quit.
The new cost of a pack of cigarettes from 1 January 2018 will be about $30.

SMOKE-FREE, SUPPORTED AND LOVING THE SAVINGS

Cantabrian Mark Woods is among the many people Quitline has helped.

Mark says the money he’s saving by not smoking means he doesn’t have to worry about unexpected expenses popping up.

After several attempts, Mark (43) finally quit smoking on Boxing Day 2016. Since then, he has saved $4,500.

"I keep track of what I’m saving on an app. That money has provided a cushion for us so that if something goes wrong, like the car breaks down or something unexpected happens, we’ve got that extra bit of money there," Mark says.

Mark’s wife is an accountant and worked out how much money he’d spent on smoking during their 20-year marriage.

"It added up to $100,000. It’s completely shocking when you add it up like that. Imagine what that money could have been spent on."

Mark, a stock agent by trade, started smoking when he was 19.

"I’d tried to give up many times and I was starting to get wheezy and get asthma so that was it, I decided it was time to seriously quit."

Mark says Quitline’s blog community helped him quit and provided the support he needed.
"The Quitline blog community was the single greatest thing for me. I was on that computer every night. It really helped to see people going through what I was going through and offering tips and advice."

QUICK QUIT STATS
Top five reasons people contacting Quitline gave for wanting to quit smoking (Most recent quarter: July 2017 to Sept 2017):
Physical health - 46%
Family/whānau - 13%, Quitting for myself - 13%
Money - 11%
I don’t know - 10%
To be a good parent/for children and/or grandchildren - 6%
Top five triggers that prompt smoking for people contacting Quitline wanting to stop smoking (Most recent quarter: July 2017 to Sept 2017):
Stressed - 47%
Doing something else, eg, talking on the phone - 17%
Bored - 12%
Drinking alcohol - 13%
With your friends or workmates - 8%
Call Quitline 24/7 on 0800 778 778 for free advice and non-judgemental support to quit smoking or visit www.quitline.org.nz and https://www.facebook.com/quitlinenz/
ENDS

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