Agassiz-Harrison Observer

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According to 2008 information provided by the Fraser Health Authority, it is estimated that 20.5 per cent of the 15 plus aged population living in the eastern half of the Fraser Health Authority Region are smokers. Its report on tobacco use also identifies young adults aged 20-34 as having the highest smoking rates and shows that todays youth start smoking at an earlier age than in the past.

Finally, There are hundreds of reasons to quit… whats yours?

Why do all these statistics matter? Smoking costs. Tobacco use costs Canadians billions of dollars each year in health care costs. Health care costs related to smoking have increased steadily since the late 60s accounting for billions of dollars in direct health costs such as hospitalizations and indirect costs such as long-term disability and premature death. Tobacco costs in the workplace.

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– Submitted by the Agassiz Community Health Centre

On Wednesday, January 19, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Agassiz Community Health Centre, in cooperation with its partners, will be hosting an Agassiz Community Lung Health Day in the second floor ballroom of Cheam Village located on 1525 Mackay Crescent in Agassiz.

According to the Canadian Tobacco Use Monitoring Survey in 2009, 14.9 per cent or approximately 550,000 British Columbians continue to smoke despite the ct that 77 per cent per cent of them are concerned about the impact their smoking will have on their long-term health.

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A recent report sponsored by the BC Healthy Living Alliance found that one employee who smokes can cost a business more than $3300 per year through absenteeism, lower productivity, higher accident rates, longer disability claims and other ctors. The total provincial cost of employing workers who smoke was found to be $661 million per annum. Tobacco use has a high personal cost. Smoking causes different types of cancer, lung diseases, and a myriad of other health problems. Tobacco use costs other persons, like children, who are impacted by second-hand smoke. However, the ultimate cost of tobacco use is loss of life. Since January 2010, more than 26,000 Canadians have died as a result of smoking. Of those, up to 6,000 are in B.C. Smoking kills more people in B.C. than drug use, motor vehicle collisions, murders, suicides and HIV/AIDS combined.

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But, quitting smoking is the single most important step anyone can take to improve their health. To educate Canadians, the National Non-Smoking Week has been observed for more than thirty years. In support, the District of Kent has proclaimed January 16-22, 2011 as National Non-Smoking Week and January 19, 2011 as Weedless Wednesday in the District of Kent.

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All members of the public are encouraAgassiz-Harrison Observerged to attend. Information will be available on smoking cessation, lung disease, COPD, and asthma; free lung testing will be conducted; and medical preastern regional integrated health authorityofessionals will be on site.

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