Page last updated at 14:51 GMT, Sunday, 16 November 2008

Firms offered stop smoking clinic

Clinics can be set up where eight workers want to give up smoking

Businesses are being urged to start their own "quit smoking clinics" with the help of hospital specialists.

The Colchester and Tendring NHS Stop Smoking Service run by NHS North East Essex can provide a specialist adviser to visit businesses.

A clinic can be set up if there are at least eight employees who would like to stop smoking.

The clinics can be either one-to-one or group consultation based and run over a period of between six and eight weeks.

Sue White, co-ordinator of the service, said: "The clinics are run with minimal disruption to work activities and a wide range of help and support is available, including nicotine replacement therapy, zyban or champix if prescribed.

"What we have found with the companies we have already worked with is that groups of employees who make a joint commitment to stop can support each other.

"They have a shared goal.

"If they are successful, it is not only good for the individuals concerned, but is good news for the company because they will have a fitter and healthier workforce.

"If businesses prefer not to have an on-site clinic or if they have fewer than eight employees, they can always offer staff time off to attend one of the many stop smoking clinics which we run around the area."

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