Airedale Hospital team helps smokers say goodbye to their nasty habit

Airedale Hospital staff celebrate their victory over cigarette smoke. From left, Alison Higgins, Shahid Rashid, IT Helpdesk; Amanda Bailey, stop-smoking adviser; and Catherine Bramley

Airedale Hospital staff celebrate their victory over cigarette smoke. From left, Alison Higgins, Shahid Rashid, IT Helpdesk; Amanda Bailey, stop-smoking adviser; and Catherine Bramley

First published in Local news

Two smokers have stubbed out the habit in advance of No Smoking Day thanks to a “quit group” at Airedale Hospital.

Medical secretary Alison Higgins had managed to quit and went without smoking for 15 years but started again just over a year ago after two bereavements.

“One night, whilst putting my daughter to bed, I went to kiss her but she turned her head away and said she was so sorry but she couldn’t kiss me because I smelt and tasted of cigarettes,” she said.

“I was devastated and rang the smoking cessation team the following day and went along to see them.

“I received invaluable, up-to-date information and excellent strategies to deal not just with the physical aspects of smoking but also with the mental and emotional attachment.

“There was never any pressure to quit by a certain date or to use a particular quit-smoking product and now I’m still a non-smoker and feeling the benefits every day.”

Catherine Bramley, ward manager of the ambulatory care unit, had wanted to quit smoking for years but never found the right time.

“I had never tried to stop before – I just didn’t know how,” she said.

“I was a pack-a-day smoker for many years.

“Taking part in Airedale’s ‘quit group’ gave me the motivation, knowledge and a plan of action. I haven’t had a cigarette for almost four months and I feel great.”

To mark the national No Smoking Day next Wednesday, information will be provided in the hospital throughout the week explaining where staff and patients wanting to quit can get help and advice.

Figures show that across the Bradford district, 21.5 per cent of adults smoke, compared to 20 per cent in Yorkshire and Humberside as a whole, and nationally.

Between 2009 and 2011, there were over 700 smoking-related deaths a year amongst people aged over 35 in the district.

Call (01274) 437700 or visit smokefree.nhs.uk for help with stopping smoking.

An information stand will be staged at Asda in Keighley on Wednesday from noon to 3pm.

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