Breaking a habit can be a really difficult thing to do, but if you are looking for support to stop smoking then NHS Borders Quit4Good Service is here to help you.

Your local pharmacy can provide advice and support or you can access support from a specialist advisor by phoning 01835 825971.

Smoking cessation figures released by ISD Scotland last week highlight that NHS Borders has achieved a higher number of ‘successful quits’ this year compared to last year.

During 2016/17, 951 people approached our Quit4Good Service for support to help them stop smoking, 271 of whom (28%) went on to have successfully quit twelve weeks later. This is a five percent increase on the previous year, and is above the Scottish average of 22.9%.

The number of successful 12 week quits in the 40% most deprived areas of the Borders also increased marginally, from 131 in 2015/16 to 140 in 2016/17, but unfortunately missed the standard set of 173. This is disappointing because once people have engaged with the service we know that success rates are higher. So in order to spread the word more widely we have run targeted Facebook and radio advertising campaigns,   allocated our advisor hours to the areas where smoking rates are higher and have recently started a drop-in in the Chest, Heart and Stroke Community Hub in Hawick which so far has been really well attended.  We are able to support people by telephone who are not able to attend clinics regularly and there are also regular drop in sessions in Health Centres at Galashiels, Selkirk, Jedburgh, Kelso and Eyemouth.

Commenting on the figures, Fiona Doig, Strategic Lead for the Alcohol and Drug Partnership and Health Improvement at NHS Borders said: “Overall, although the number of people who are attempting to stop smoking is reducing across Scotland, those who are seeking support to make the positive behaviour change are achieving better success rates, which is great news for everyone concerned.

“The evidence clearly shows that people who access our Quit4Good service, either through their local community pharmacy or our network of specialist advisors, are four times more likely to succeed.

“If you are unsure about how best to access help, please call Quit4Good on 01835 825971 for advice or to make an appointment, or pop into your local community pharmacy.”