Smoking cessation clinics are readily available for everyone wanting to quit, it is up to us to start and pave our way to better health
The Malaysian government – specifically the Minister of Health, has never been more serious in getting people to stop smoking. The recent ban in eateries is a firm step forward towards the goal of being a smoke-free nation.
Each and every one of us know that smoking is bad for us, and more and more people are open to the idea of quitting the habit. Of course, the journey is far from the end, as we continue to help the ones needing help with quitting, and for the ones quitting to find the motivation to say no.
Smoking cessation clinics
The absolute best way for a smoker to start quitting is through consultation, and consultation has been open to everyone for a long time. There are a total of 731 public smoking cessation clinics and 46 hospitals providing smoking cessation services across the country, with more in the form of private clinics.
The Ministry of Health had breathed new life into smoking cessation in 2015 with mQuit Services, a service that spans both public and private centres in providing standardised, accredited services to the public.
And so far, data from the ministry has proven admirable. Director-General of Health, Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah states; “Smoking cessation clients has greatly increased since the culmination of mQuit Services. 7,757 people were recorded to go for consultation in 2015, while the numbers turned to 9,570 in 2016 and 10,240 in 2017.”
How do you seek help?
Clinics and hospitals exist to provide healthcare, and therefore welcome anyone wanting to seek help for their health and well-being. The same applies to smoking cessation clinincs.
If you are looking for a helping hand to quit your smoking habit, you only need to locate a smoking cessation clinic in your area and walk straight in. You might have to arrange an appointment and so on, but you will get help.
Moreover, public smoking cessation clinics will only cost you RM1 to RM5 per consultation. You might be paying more if you are going to private centres.
Statement given by Dr Noor Hisham recently also showed the success rate for smokers quitting. “Statistics shows that the success rate is rising annually as well, from 24 percent in 2015, to 26.6 percent in 2016 and at the latest, 36% in 2017.”
How do you actually quit?
Now that you know where to get help, you might then ask, what are the methods done by clinics or hospitals to make you quit?
The treatment is relatively the same anywhere. This is because smoking cessation clinics in Malaysia follow a specific guideline, called the Clinical Practice Guideline (CPG): Treatment for Tobacco Use Disorder.
“There are two main methods in regards to smoking cessation as per the CPG. One is through nicotine replacing medication (pharmalogical), and the other is through behavioural therapy. Behavioural therapy will include counselling sessions provided by smoking cessation experts for smokers,” explains Dr Noor Hisham.
While the methods are relatively simple, the ability for someone to actually quit doesn’t come easily. “The success rate of someone quitting really depends on various factors, such as addiction level towards nicotine, the will to quit, the environment, as well as the support from family and friends,” he adds.
It is safe to say that given the support created by the government, private health sectors, and even family and friends, it is still up to us to tell ourselves to quit. The passion to live our lives to the fullest should be the motivation to stop lighting up those cigarettes. — The Health
READY TO QUIT: Datuk Dr Noor Hisham tells the positive reaction of smokers in regards to quitting, based on the smoking cessation clinics’ clients statistics.
Apart from lung cancer, smoking heightens the risk of chronic lung disease, cardiovascular disease, cervical cancer, and miscarriages.
Ex-smokers and their success
“I’ve been smoking for 26 years, and have been clean of cigarettes for a year now. I am truly grateful to my doctor for her support and to help me see the benefits of quitting the habit.” – Sabariah
“After 8 months of not smoking,
I do feel more energized and healthy. I am happy to have quit, and will continue my journey towards
– Azranizam Abdul Ghani
“I stopped after a terrible cough and had felt out of breath. Went to the clinic for a check-up, and now have fully quit smoking. I am healthy now then I was before.” – Hanis Hanafi
Cancer risks created by smoking
• The chances of a smoker to develop cancer is 20 time more likely compared to non-smokers. Other than lung cancer, other types of illnesses heavily related to smoking includes;
• Chronic lung diseases such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema
• Cardiovascular diseases (heart attacks and artery blockages which then can lead to stroke and gangrene)
• Women are highly at risk of cervical cancer, miscarriage, premature birth, and stillborn.
Number of public health clinics
with smoking cessation services by state
State Year (2017)
1 Perlis 9
2 Kedah 56
3 Penang 29
4 Perak 79
5 Selangor 61
6 K.Lumpur and Putrajaya 16
7 Negeri Sembilan 46
8 Malacca 29
9 Johor 94
10 Pahang 77
11 Terengganu 45
12 Kelantan 59
13 Sabah 78
14 Sarawak 52
15 WP Labuan 1
Number of public hospitals
with smoking cessation services
State No. Hospitals
1 Perlis 1 Hospital Tuanku Fauziah, Kangar
2 Kedah 3 Hospital Sultanah Bahiyah, Alor Star
Hospital Sultan Abdul Halim, Sg Petani
3 Penang 2 Hospital Pulau Pinang
Hospital Seberang Jaya
4 Perak 5 Hospital Permaisuri Bainun, Ipoh
Hospital Slim River
Hospital Seri Manjung
Hospital Bahagia Ulu Kinta
5 Selangor 7 Hospital Selayang
Hospital Tengku Ampuan Rahimah, Klang
Hospital Sungai Buloh
Hospital Shah Alam
6 Kuala Lumpur 1 Hospital Kuala Lumpur
7 N.Sembilan 2 Hospital Tuanku Jaafar, Seremban
Hospital Tuanku Najihah, Kuala Pilah
8 Malacca 1 Hospital Melaka
9 Johor 5 Hospital Sultanah Aminah, Johor Bahru
Hospital Sultanah Fatimah, Muar
Hospital Sultan Ismail
Hospital Batu Pahat
10 Pahang 3 Hospital Tengku Ampuan Afzan, Kuantan
Hospital Sultan Haji Ahmad Shah, Temerloh
11 Terengganu 1 Hospital Sultanah Nur Zahirah
12 Kelantan 3 Hospital Raja Perempuan Zainab II
Hospital Tanah Merah
Hospital Kuala Krai
13 Sabah 7 Hospital Queen Elizabeth
Hospital Queen Elizabeth II
Hospital Duchess of Kent, Sandakan
14 Sarawak 4 Hospital Umum Sarawak
15 Putrajaya 1 Hospital Putrajaya