Today is the Great American Smoke Out – started by the American Cancer Society to encourage smokers to quit, even if it is just for one day.  Arizona is doing very well compared to the rest of the country when you talk about stopping smoking.  Our state is down to 16% of the adult population that smokes – the national average is 21%.  But those that are left are the most addicted – so we need to help them any way we can.

The Arizona Smokers’ Helpline is expanding its arsenal of resources to help smokers quit tobacco with the addition of the Call It Quits app.  The app debuted on ASHLine’s Facebook page this week and will soon be introduced as an iPhone app.

Support from friends and family are essential and things like nicotine replacement medication or patches can help make the difference between success and failure when quitting smoking.  People in Arizona can tap into free telephone quit coaching through the ASHLine at 1-800-55-66-222 and free online quit coaching services via WebQuit™ at The Arizona Smokers’ Helpline has one of the best quit rates in the country and has been helping people for 15 years.

Business owners can help too – take a look at your health plans and see if they support your employees who want to quit. It can be a good investment – the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates comprehensive smoking-cessation benefits cost between $1.20 and $4.80 per person per year, miniscule when compared with the $1,623-per-smoker per year in excess medical expenditures.