Agenda item

Smoking Cessation Service Update - Dayna Towns, South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (Sac.17.02.2023/5)


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


Members were informed that Dayna had been in post since August, 2021 whose main role was to promote and develop Yorkshire Smokefree Barnsley across the South Area.  The role allowed for Dayna to work closely with community groups, and promote general health and wellbeing to members of the community and signpost them to relevant services.


Members noted the Key Performance Indicators and that the annual target may not be met for registrations into the service, although it was noted that some figures for the end of January were yet to be included within the forecast.  However, the number of quits at 4 weeks and at 12 weeks had exceeded their targets.  This information had highlighted the need for more support with referrals as once people were in the system it was a success.


Members heard of the variety of work being carried out in the South Area in order to promote the service including, face to face clinics, attending Winter Warmth and Cost of Living events.  Sending promotional posters and leaflets to GP surgeries and pharmacies as well as online media posts.  Training had been carried out with a number of community services in how to make referrals into the service and support was provided to Stop Smoking Advisers within GP practices in order to keep them up to date with changes in best practice.


Members were informed that targeted work to gain access to workplaces in order to set up health and wellbeing programmes remained a barrier.  Members were asked if they could provide any links into these workplaces in order to help set these up.


New resources would be made available on social media platforms to promote clinics.  Plans were also in place to create content around advisers by making them more personable by including pictures of who the adviser is in the clinic and what an appointment would entail.  Alternative posters would be designed to be based in dental surgeries, children’s centres and veterinary practices.  Client stories would be shared on the South Area Council social media platform on a monthly basis.


Looking forward, future development that would be taking place would include attending more events and linking in with services such as Age UK.  Training would be provided to Community Development Officers, Private Housing Officers and Family Centre Workers in how to make referrals into the system.  Plus a variety of other events in the South Area.


Councillors queried as to whether it would be advantageous to promote the fact that 90% of the South Area do not smoke and whether to aim the campaign towards the younger generation.  In response it was acknowledged that this would taken on board and included in future promotional material.


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.  In response members were informed there were no immediate plans to liaise with schools but this would be looked into in the future. 


Members raised concerns around people turning to vaping after smoking and the dangers therein.  In response they were informed that guidelines stated that vaping was 95% safer than smoking but that it was clients choice whether to use one to aid stopping smoking tobacco and was not an option promoted as part of the Service. 


It was reported that further work, separate to the Stopping Smoking Service, was being undertaken to tackle vaping, particularly in the younger generation.  A funded incentive scheme had been set up in collaboration with Barnsley College to help stop vaping and there were plans to lobby and work with the Government and Regional Public Health Teams in order to achieve this.  


Members were informed that 17% of the Barnsley population smoked and with the increased cost, it was a significant contribution to poverty.  There was a fear that due to this people would turn to illicit tobacco that would be even more harmful to people’s health.  Smoking was the leading cause of preventable deaths which could be reduced if more people were referred into the programme.


Members enquired as to the range of reasons why people smoked and wished to quit.  It was reported that reasons for quitting varied from affordability to health but, it was highlighted that smoking was an addiction and as difficult to give up as crack cocaine.  There were plans to rename the service from the Stopping Smoking Service to the Tobacco Treatment Service to reflect the fact that it is an addiction that needs treating.   


Routine and manual male workers were one of the highest demographic of smokers, as well as health workers.  Work was being undertaken to tackle this with the health service and there were hopes of getting into more work places.


Members noted that the numbers of young people smoking had reduced significantly but there was no data to show whether they had moved onto vaping instead, as smoking was no longer socially acceptable. 


Members suggested that following the success of the Smokefree zones in Hoyland Town Centre, Elsecar Park and Wombwell High Street that this be expanded to a Smokefree South Area.  It was hoped word of mouth would give this plan momentum.


RESOLVED that the Chair and members thank Dayna for the presentation and continuous hard work being undertaken.  

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