For more information, contact Kelli Hawkins, SRHD Public Information Officer (509) 324-1539 or khawkins@srhd.org.

Spokane, Wash. - Spokane Regional Health District (SRHD) and its partners are again joining forces for Done My Way, Spokane’s popular smoking and vaping cessation campaign, during the Great American Smokeout, Nov. 21, 2019.

The Great American Smokeout event encourages current smokers, and those who use e-cigarettes and vaping devices in Spokane to commit to healthy, smoke-free lives. Thousands of smokers across the country will take an important step toward a healthier life by stopping smoking and vaping.

Each year, approximately 18 million American smokers try to stop, representing more than half of the 34.3 million smokers in the U.S. Only about 1.3 million (7%) succeed. An even greater percentage of smokers (68%) report being interested in quitting.

This year’s campaign includes community-wide efforts to educate on the dangers of vaping. According to health experts at SRHD, vaping has rapidly become a challenge in Spokane and nationwide.

“Vaping is dangerous. The harmful effects we’re just beginning to see have devastating consequences,” said Dr. Bob Lutz, Spokane Regional Health District health officer. “It’s time for an honest discussion about the current and future health impacts vaping will have on our community.”

Dr. Lutz’s concerns are supported by reports from the Federal Drug Administration that show over five million youth are currently using e-cigarettes, up from 3.6 million in 2018. Combined with reports from the Center for Disease Control stating 2,172 cases of e-cigarette, or vaping, product use associated lung injury as of Nov. 13, 2019, the increased use becomes concerning.

Great American Smokeout events in Spokane County will offer free quit kits and more to individuals who smoke or vape and are ready to stop. People are encouraged to stop for a day, a week, or for good. They can use a quit kit to get started. A quit kit contains:

  • Done My Way water bottle – Individuals who are stopping smoking and vaping are encouraged to drink plenty of water to move toxins through the body.
  • Straws – People who are stopping smoking and vaping can use straws to help keep their hands and mouth busy.
  • Gum - When individuals are trying to stop and have a craving, they can chew gum instead of smoking.
  • Toothpicks – People can also use a toothpick to keep their mouth busy and ease a craving.
  • Quitline Card – When trying to stop, people can take advantage of 24-hour phone support by calling 800-QUIT-NOW.
  • 2MorrowQuit App – Information on a FREE app designed to help people overcome urges to smoke.

In addition, SRHD is partnering with Spokane Public Schools (SPS) to host “Cutting Through the Vapor,” a Vaping Prevention Symposium, on Thursday, Nov. 21, 5-9 p.m. at North Central High School. Attendees will hear from school, health and student partners addressing the realities and dangers associated with vaping among Spokane youth. Details on the event can be found on SPS’s website.

For more information on Done My Way, including campaign resources, a Resource Guide, and links to testimonial videos, visit www.donemyway.org. The Spokane Regional Health District is a leader and partner in public health by protecting, improving and promoting the health and well-being of all people through evidence-based practices. SRHD is one of 34 local public health agencies serving Washington state’s 39 counties. Visit www.srhd.org for comprehensive, updated information about the SRHD and its triumphs in making Spokane a safer and healthier community. Like SRHD on Facebook or follow us on Twitter to receive safety and wellness tips.