Monday, September 28, 2020

Fatality risk high for smokers infected with Covid-19

May 30. 2020
Dr Manas Phothaporn
Dr Manas Phothaporn
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By THE NATION

Smokers who contract Covid-19 are likely to have 14 times more severe conditions compared to non-smokers, raising the the risk of fatality, a doctor has warned.

Dr Manas Phothaporn, deputy director-general of the Department of Medical Services, said that smoking is one of the major public health problems as more than 1.68 billion people worldwide are addicted to nicotine in cigarettes.

“More than 10 million people die because of smoking each year as cigarettes are the cause of more than 25 diseases including cancer, heart diseases and pulmonary emphysema.

“The World Health Organization has declared May 31 as "World No Tobacco Day" to emphasise the dangers of smoking, especially this year when the Covid-19 outbreak has hit nearly every country in the world,” added Manas. “Smokers who contract the new coronavirus are likely to suffer from up to 14 times more severe conditions than the normal person. The pneumonia alone caused by Covid-19 could result in death as smoking will lower the body’s immune system and damage the lungs.

“Quitting smoking will help restore the smokers’ immune system as well as reduce the inflammation in lung tissues, not to mention it will help save money during the economic crisis that many countries are facing,” he added.

The Princess Mother National Institute on Drug Abuse Treatment under the Department of Medical Science has organised the World No Tobacco Day Week during the last week of May at the institute in Pathum Thani. The event features exhibitions on the dangers of smoking as well as booths providing advice on how to effectively quit smoking. Interested persons can visit the event or call the Quit Smoking hotline at 1165. For more information, visit: www.pmindat.go.th

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