Smokers more at risk from coronavirus complications
Deborah Arnott Chief Executive of public health charity ASH echoed the CMO’s advice: “Smokers are more likely to get respiratory infections and twice as likely to develop pneumonia than non-smokers. Quitting smoking is good for your health in so many ways and smokers should see coronavirus as further motivation to give quitting a go to build up their bodies’ defences now before coronavirus becomes widespread in the UK.”
She also had a message for health professionals: “Those in the NHS working with patients who smoke should see it as a priority to advise them to stop. Particularly among groups that are already highly vulnerable to respiratory infections such as those with COPD, and known to have very high rates of smoking which particularly includes those with mental health conditions.”
ASH is calling on NHS settings to ensure they are implementing NICE guidance to help patients quit smoking during this period with a particular emphasis on vulnerable smokers.