Approximately 15% of the adult population in Northamptonshire are smokers, that’s 87,438 people, which is higher than the national average. We look at why is this important to my workplace, the local economy and me as an employee?
Employers should know:
It is estimated that smoking breaks cost businesses in Northamptonshire up to £41.6m a year.
Smokers take more sick leave from work than non-smokers. Smoking increases blood pressure and heart rate, making your employee’s heart work harder than normal in the working environment after a smoking break. For every 1 smoker that dies, 30 live with a serious smoking-related illness, placing an increased strain on our health and social care system. Each year, smoking takes the lives of hundreds of Northamptonshire residents, and costs the local economy more than £160 million with the total annual cost of smoking to local NHS services in Northamptonshire being £33.8 million.
Employees that smoke should consider:
An average smoker who quits saves around £128 each month, based on today’s prices. That’s more than £1,500 a year going up in smoke. If you quit smoking, you’ll give yourself a pay rise! Smokers can expect to die 10 years earlier than non-smokers. Every 15 cigarettes you smoke will cause a mutation in your body, mutations are how cancers start. Cancers caused by smoking include kidney, throat, mouth and lung. One in two smokers will die from a smoking-related disease. Smoking can cause male impotence and for women, smoking can reduce fertility. Smoking prematurely ages your skin by between 10 and 20 years, and makes it three times more likely you’ll get facial wrinkling
Support available in Northampton for all workplaces:
It is for the reasons above that tobacco control remains high on the agenda for Public Health Northamptonshire’s Smoking Cessation Service. Evidence proves that people are more likely to successfully quit smoking with the support of services such as the smoking cessation service.
The service already provides support to Northamptonshire residents through behavioural support and advice with quitting smoking, but the team are now embracing vaping to significantly reduce the harm caused by cigarettes. Public Health England states that vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking. Vaping carries a small fraction of the risk of smoking and has been found to be almost twice as effective as nicotine replacement therapy in helping smokers to quit.
Get Help to Quit
From February 2020, smokers in Northamptonshire have the option to choose a free e-cigarette starter kit and a supply of e-liquid when they take part in the 12 week stop smoking programme. Those who choose to use an e-cigarette will be given a Totally Wicked ‘Skope S’ starter kit and up to 16 bottles of e-liquid, in various strengths and flavours. Over the next 12 months, the service will also be running a series of workplace interventions, providing e-cigarettes and voucher incentives to those looking to stop smoking. This work, funded by the East Midlands Cancer Alliance, gives routine and manual workplaces the opportunity to significantly improve the health and wellbeing of their employees at absolutely no cost.
If you are a Northamptonshire resident that would like to stop smoking please contact 0300 126 5700 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Northampton Public Health Team also offers Health MOTs and healthy lifestyle programmes in workplaces which measure blood pressure and weight of employees and offer healthy lifestyle and behaviour change advice. To receive a copy of the brochure please email: email@example.com
Public Health Northamptonshire is a Directorate within Northamptonshire County Council. Since 1 April 2013, Local Authorities have been responsible for improving the health of their local population with national public health functions overseen by Public Health England. The team commissions services with the aim of giving every child the best start in life, encouraging people to take responsibility for their health and make the best choices, promoting independence and quality of life for older residents and creating an environment for all the flourish. They also have a delivery team that you may see out and about in the community.