NEW figures have revealed that someone in the Solent area is taken to hospital with a smoking-related illness every 40 minutes.
Figures from Public Health England show in Portsmouth 1,553 people were admitted to hospital with smoking-related illnesses in 2015/16. And the city saw 945 deaths attributed to smoking.
In Hampshire, there were 9,787 smoking-related hospital admissions and 5,478 deaths.
Now PHE has launched a hard-hitting new campaign to encourage people to quit the habit in the new year.
The advert shows how poisons from tar in cigarettes enter the bloodstream, spreading around the body within seconds and causing damage to major organs.
To help explain the on-going internal harm caused, the advert shows seven life-long smokers who declare their intention to quit after seeing the results of a laboratory demonstration.
In the Solent area alone there is one person admitted to hospital with a smoking-related disease every 40 minutes.Jason Mahoney
The test results show how their smoking has led to elevated levels of cadmium (a metal used in batteries), cancer-causing nitrosamines and carbon monoxide in their blood.
Jason Mahoney, health and wellbeing lead for PHE south east, said: ‘Smoking is a deadly habit. Each year it kills 36,532 people in the south east and 64,684 people are admitted to hospital with a smoking-related illness.
‘In the Solent area alone there is one person admitted to hospital with a smoking-related disease every 40 minutes.
‘Our new TV ad shows how every cigarette sends a flood of poisonous chemicals through the bloodstream in seconds.
‘We are urging every smoker in the south east to take advantage of the free smokefree support and quit for good this new year.’
Hilary Devey, presenter, entrepreneur and lifelong smoker, is one of the seven people in the new television advert.
She said: ‘I’ve smoked at least 20 a day for over 40 years.
‘Like many, I’ve been hooked on cigarettes and ignoring the damage.
‘Even though I know the harm I’m doing, I’ve found it extremely difficult to quit for good.
‘Even a stroke three years ago only led me to stop temporarily.
‘Seeing the high levels of poisonous chemicals in my blood from these tests really hit home how dangerous continuing to smoke is – and for that reason, I’m done.’
For more information on how to quit smoking visit nhs.uk/smokefree.
Annual smoking attributable hospital
admissions by local authority
Isle of Wight 1,021
West Sussex 7,316
Isle of Wight 858
West Sussex 4,020