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    Celebrating the Helpline's 25th Anniversary!

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    CONTACT:
    Cristina Samiley
    213-335-5570

     THE CALIFORNIA SMOKERS’ HELPLINE CELEBRATES 25 YEARS OF HELPING CLIENTS BREAK FREE FROM TOBACCO
    Helpline services have helped more than 800,000 Californians with method proven to double likelihood of successfully quitting

    SAN DIEGO (November 16, 2017) – Today, the California Smokers’ Helpline, the nation’s first statewide smoking quitline, is marking its silver anniversary by announcing plans to support more Californians quit smoking for good.  Over the next few years, the Helpline will add more counselors, expand outreach to healthcare providers, introduce new protocols to better serve those with mental health conditions, and release a new version of its well-received app to help even more people quit smoking in a way that works for them.

    These expansions were developed as part of a multifaceted approach to build the Helpline’s capacity and provide additional options to assist even more Californians quit tobacco.  “We planned these expansions so the California Smoker’s Helpline can stay ahead of our clients’ needs, and to ensure we can help more people reach their quit goals in a manner that’s most effective for them,” said Shu-Hong Zhu, PhD, director, California Smokers’ Helpline.  The Helpline’s research-based protocol has been proven to double a person’s likelihood of quitting for good.

    The California Helpline was launched in 1992 as an experiment, but by 2002, every state in the nation had adopted similar telephone quitline services.  The Helpline has provided free and confidential telephone counseling services to more than 800,000 Californians, an average of 32,000 clients a year. The typical caller is about 50 years old, but clients have included some as young as 14. Quitting assistance is offered in English, Spanish, Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese and Korean, as well as TDD, all from highly trained and caring counselors.  Chat services are also available, as well as a text messaging program.

    “The Helpline’s dedicated counselors are clients’ supportive partners in their quit process,” said Dr. Zhu.  “While we use the same research-proven method with each client, conversations and interactions are always shaped to address each person’s specific needs, questions and goals.  Our counselors are a critical part of our success.”

    As part of its anniversary, the California Smokers’ Helpline is showing the positive impact of quitting tobacco through the release of a touching video that shares the story of one of its now tobacco-free clients, Antonio. He credits the support of the Helpline with successfully quitting and remaining smoke-free. “I have been smoke-free for five years.  The calls from 1-800-NO-BUTTS were a big part of my recovery from smoking.”  Antonio’s story can be seen at https://www.nobutts.org/25yearsofquitting.

    California’s smoking rate is the second lowest in the nation.  However, even with that achievement, tobacco use remains the number one cause of preventable death and disease in the state.   Approximately 40,000 Californians die each year from tobacco-related illnesses.  More information about the California Smokers’ Helpline is available at www.nobutts.org or 1-800-NO-BUTTS.

    GENERAL FACTS ON THE CALIFORNIA SMOKERS’ HELPINE CLIENTS

    Approximately 57% of Helpline clients are female, and 42% are male.  More than half of clients are between the ages of 45 and 64, and more than a quarter are between 25 and 44. 

    DEMOGRAPHIC BREAKDOWN OF CALIFORNIA SMOKERS’ HELPINE CLIENTS

    Community

    % of Helpline Clients

    % in California that Smoke

    American Indian

    1.0%

    24.2%

    Asian American/Pacific Islander

    5.5%

    8.6%

    Black/African American

    17%

    20.7%

    Hispanic Latino

    16.3%

    11.5%

    White/Caucasian

    49.8%

    13.0%

    LBGT

    6.8%

    18.1%*

    *Smoking prevalence is 13.1% for heterosexual California adults.

    About California Smokers’ Helpline

    The California Smokers’ Helpline is a free, evidence-based, telephone counseling program for quitting smoking, proven in clinical trials to double a smoker’s chance of successfully quitting. Services are available in English, Spanish, Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese and include telephone counseling, self-help materials, chat, text messaging program, and mobile app. Specialized services are available for teens, pregnant smokers, and tobacco chewers. Free nicotine patches are available to smokers who are pregnant, have children ages 0 to 5, or who speak Asian languages. The California Smokers’ Helpline can be reached at 1-800-NO-BUTTS or at www.nobutts.org, and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/nobutts.org.  All services can be reached at:

    English: 1-800-NO-BUTTS (1-800-662-8887)
    Chinese: 1-800-838-8917
    Korean: 1-800-556-5564
    Spanish: 1-800-45-NO-FUME (1-800-456-6386)
    Vietnamese: 1-800-778-8440
    Tobacco Chewers: 1-800-844-CHEW (1-800-844-2439)

    Refer patients to California's Smokers Helpline
     
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