The Kane County Health Department has many resources on its website (kanehealth.com/tobacco_program.htm) to help people quit the habit. For example, the Health Department recommends calling the Illinois Department of Public Health’s Quit Line at 1-866-784-8937 for assistance in quitting.
The start of the new year marks the fifth anniversary of the Smokefree Illinois Act which protects everyone from the health risks associated with secondhand smoke exposure. Illinois enacted the strongest clean indoor air law in the country.
The landmark Smokefree Illinois legislation prohibits smoking in all indoor public places and workplaces including bars and restaurants. As of January 2011, more than half of the country (30 states and counting) are smoke-free. Smokefree laws are popular because they improve public health and reduce the healthcare costs to treat people with smoking-related diseases.
These are just some of the benefits of Smokefree Illinois:
In 2008, 21.2 percent of Illinois adults smoked; that number dropped to 16.9 percent in 2012. The Health Department’s Community Health Improvement Plan completed last year found the smoking rate in Kane County is 12 percent.
According to the Illinois Department of Public Health, since Smoke Free Illinois went into effect, tobacco-related hospitalizations and healthcare costs have decreased substantially. In fact, hospitalizations for tobacco-related diseases are well below those in the two years prior to the Smokefree Illinois Act.
Heart disease hospitalizations have shown the greatest decline. It’s estimated that more than 30,200 heart disease hospitalizations in Illinois have been prevented, which translates into an estimated savings of $1.18 billion in hospital costs alone; the average cost for heart disease admissions is nearly $39,000.
It’s clear that Smokefree Illinois improves public health and reduces healthcare costs for all Illinoisans. All Kane County hospitals (Provena Mercy, Provena Saint Joseph, Rush Copley, Cadence, and Sherman), universities (Aurora and Judson), and Wabaunsee Community College have smoke-free campuses.
Elgin Community College has designated smoking areas.
More resources are available from the American Lung Association, the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. You can always stay up-t0-date with health news by following the Kane County Health Department on Twitter @KaneCoHealth and Facebook.
SOURCE: Kane County Health Department