Agenda item

Public Health Update - Smoking Cessation - Dayna Towns (Sac.17.12.2021/4)


Dayna Towns, Community Stop Smoking Advisor (South), provided an update in relation to Yorkshire Smokefree Barnsley. 


Members were informed that Dayna had been in post since August, 2021 and her main role was to promote and develop Yorkshire Smokefree Barnsley across the South Area. 


Smoking prevalence in the South Area was reported as lower than the overall average across the Borough, but that smoking was one of the latest contributors to death in England and one of the leading causes of a wide range of cancers.


Yorkshire Smokefree provided 12 weeks of support including a combination of face to face clinics and free replacement therapy products such as nicotine patches and chewing gum in order to help clients achieve their goal of stopping smoking.  Members noted that there were plans for group clinics to be held in the New Year in Darfield and the Hoyland Centre.  It was noted that this would be achieved with close working relationships with the Area Council, GPs, Pharmacies and neighbourhood partners in order to open up pathways for referrals, plus promotional events would be held around the area to aid in the work towards a smokefree society by 2025. 


Lisa Lyon, South Area Council Manager provided members with a background to how the posts had come about, informing them that 3 had been recruited in total for the South, Dearne and Central Areas.  The roles had been devised from a pilot scheme that had been held in the North East area that had taken a traditional smoking cessation post and embedded it within community work with GPs, schools and community groups which was then rolled out to other area councils.  The key being to work with members to find opportunities to embed the roles locally rather than in GP surgeries.  It was noted however, that there had been some difficulty in holding events and any suggestions from members would be welcomed.


Members gave an indication that they would welcome the service in Wombwell and that the library had rooms available to hold some sessions plus there would be an opportunity for a market stall on Wombwell high street on market day. 


Dayna informed members that clients could be referred through a number of pathways including calling themselves, their GPs who have a specific referral system they can use and also through hospitals.  There was a desire to also have referrals through dentists but this was still being looked into.


The Yorkshire Smokefree Barnsley 12 week programme was welcomed by members, however concerns were raised around the use and safety of vaping devices and whether this was also used as an alternative to smoking.  They were informed that vaping was relatively new and research on the safety was continually being undertaken but that the NHS did not provide vaping devices and the use of which was client choice.  Diane Lee, Head of Public Health, informed members that smoking remained the one of the biggest causes of death and illness and the aim of the work being done around smoking cessation was to create an environment where people would want to quit.  Members were offered a presentation of the latest research report on vaping at the next area council to which they agreed.


Members raised questions around the age demographic of clients and whether there was a particular age range that were affected the most.  It was confirmed that in generalit was the older age ranges that had been smoking for most of their lives and had illnesses such as COPD that were being referred and that it could take some clients more than one 12 week course to quit. 


It was recognised that there was a desire and a need to push for advisers to return to schools in order to aid pupils in stopping smoking.


The Chair and members thanked Dayna for the presentation and hard work being undertaken.

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