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ANF supports anti-smoking campaign

Aiming to reduce the rate of smoking among pregnant women and indigenous Australians, the government’s new anti-smoking campaign has been welcomed by the Australian Nursing Federation (ANF).

The campaign will run for four weeks with television, radio and print ads advocating the benefits of quitting and offering support by means of a helpline and a smart phone app.

ANF Federal Secretary Lee Thomas said the ANF supports the Government’s initiatives aimed at reducing smoking to save lives and improve the overall health of Australians.

She said smoking continues to be the single largest cause of preventable premature death and disease in Australia.

“Around 15,000 Australians die from smoking related diseases – 40 preventable deaths every day,” Thomas said.

She said public health is already struggling under growing patient demand, and smoking and smoking-related diseases are creating a massive burden on the Australian health system.

Federal Health Minister Tanya Plibersek said the new ad campaign is designed to promote the benefits of quitting rather than the detrimental effects of smoking.

“Education and support are the best way forward for helping people give up. We know that tobacco is a very strong addiction,” Plibersek told reporters.

The campaign comes as plain packaged cigarettes become compulsory from December 1.

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