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Friday, October 22, 2021

Qatar opens new clinic to help smokers quit

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Hamad Medical Corporation’s (HMC) Tobacco Control Centre inaugurates a new smoking cessation Clinic.

HMC’s Tobacco Control Centre opened a new dedicated smoking cessation clinic at Hazm Mebaireek General Hospital (HMGH) on Thursday, January 21, as part of its strategic plan to help people across the country lead healthier lives.

“The new clinic will operate currently on Mondays, with plans to expand clinic hours to cope with future demands as needed,” HMC said in a statement.

For appointments, all citizens and residents of Qatar can call 40240708 or book through a referral from HMC physicians or Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCC). 

For those with smoking addictions, appointments at the new clinic are inclusive of consultations by specialist physicians and nursing staff who have been specifically trained to deliver smoking cessation services.

Read also: HMC to resume face-to-face appointments

“The clinic will offer those who want to quit smoking various kinds of smoking cessation treatments, as needed,”  read a statement on HMC’s website.

HMC, which has been officially designated as a WHO Collaborating Centre, started its non-smoking campaign last year with the opening of its first smoking cessation clinic at Al Wakra Hospital.

“The new clinic will support the Centre’s mission to raise public awareness on the dangers of tobacco use in addition to providing health and medical advice, as well as behavioural support and counselling for smokers to help them quit the habit,” said Dr. Ahmad Al Mulla, Head of the HMC’s Tobacco Control Centre.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the number of males using tobacco in Qatar, is decreasing.

In 2019, WHO published a report presenting estimates of tobacco use prevalence, numbers or users, and changes between 2000 and 2018 while projecting figures to 2025. 

The report shows that the number of overall global tobacco users is on a decline, from 1.397 billion in 2000 to 1.337 billion in 2018, or by approximately 60 million people.

It also pointed out that the number of male tobacco users has stopped growing and anticipated a decline by more than one million fewer male users come 2020 (or 1.091 billion) compared to 2018 levels, and five million less by 2025 (1.087 billion).

In Qatar, the current tobacco use prevalence trends among males aged 15 and older in 2000 was 30.2%, in 2005 that dropped to 29.5%, in 2020 it was predicted to be 28.1%.

Among females, it was 2.5% in 2000 and was predicted to have dropped to 1.1 percent in 2020.

“Declines in tobacco use among males mark a turning point in the fight against tobacco,” Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General has said upon releasing the report.

“For many years now we had witnessed a steady rise in the number of males using deadly tobacco products. But now, for the first time, we are seeing a decline in male use, driven by governments being tougher on the tobacco industry. WHO will continue working closely with countries to maintain this downward trend,” he added.

In January 2019 Qatar’s government increased duty on cigarettes, enforcing a 100% tax rate on all tobacco products.

Are you a smoker? Would a clinic like this help you quit? let us know in the comments below.


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