More than 90 service users and members of staff at SHSC were helped to go smoke free in 2023.
The QUIT Programme recognises that smoking is an addiction, that often starts in childhood – not a lifestyle choice. Tobacco addiction is a preventable illness and there are very effective treatments for it.
Developed in partnership with Yorkshire Cancer Research, the QUIT team ensures that treatment for tobacco addiction is built into the routine care offered to every service user in Sheffield Health and Social Care NHS Foundation Trust. The service is also offered to staff members.
The QUIT programme offers people on it:
- 12 weeks of one to one behavioural support
- 12 weeks of free nicotine replacement therapy (NRT)
- Free vapes
- Tools to support an individual manage withdrawals and maintain motivation
Emma came to the QUIT team for help after three previous attempts at giving up. The team helped her to successfully give up and reduce her stress levels.
Emma's initial choice of treatment was to switch from cigarettes to vapes, also using nicotine patches to ease the transition.
Emma said: “I can’t fault anything. The support was more than I thought it would be. I can’t think of anything you could have done better.
"The team kept reminding me of all the good things I’d done every time I made a mistake. Then showed me it wasn’t that bad a mistake and stopped me worrying about it.”
Emma found the transition quite manageable and the treatment she had from the QUIT team meant she suffered little to no nicotine withdrawals.
There were bumps along the road but Emma and her tobacco treatment advisor, Simon Hiley, discussed the reasons for these and agreed that it was the habit of smoking and vaping that caused the slips.
Emma then decided she wanted to be completely nicotine free and to therefore give up vapes as well as cigarettes and, after some hard work to get there, Emma calls herself an 'ex-smoker.'
Asked about how things have improved since giving up with the QUIT team, Emma said: “My breathing is better, I hardly use my inhaler now. My clothes don’t stink and my skin feels much better.
"I have so much less stress just because the bills are easier to pay."