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Smokers know about tools to help them stop, but don't use them: INSPQ

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Research shows that while a majority of smokers and recent ex-smokers in Quebec are aware of tools to help them kick the habit, not a lot of them actually use them.

A document published Thursday by the Institut national de santé publique (INSPQ) finds that even pharmacological aids and well-known services are barely used.

The J'ARRÊTE telephone helpline and website are known to 81 per cent and 61 per cent of recent smokers and ex-smokers, respectively, but only used by two per cent and eight per cent of them.

Opinions are also divided on whether they are helpful.

Pharmacological aids, in particular nicotine patches, gums and lozenges, are known to over 95 per cent of current and former smokers aged 18 and over but used by less than 10 per cent.

Reimbursements for pharmacological aids are considered very useful by the majority of people, yet few smokers take advantage of them.

The INSPQ points out that the literature confirms that these interventions are effective and their costs are lower than treatments for diseases caused by smoking.

However, a significant number of smokers and recent ex-smokers say they want to quit smoking on their own.

The research points out that the scarcity of smokers using these tools is not unique to Quebec; it's also the case in other Canadian provinces and elsewhere in the world.

This data is available after smokers and ex-smokers were invited by the INSPQ to complete a questionnaire.

From February to May 2022, 1,336 smokers and ex-smokers took part.

-- This report by The Canadian Press was first published in French on Feb. 23, 2024. 

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