Smokers need more help from GPs, figures show

AMANDA PARKINSON
Last updated 05:00 30/05/2014

Relevant offers

Southern smokers struggling to quit are not been given enough help by their GPs, new figures show.

The Ministry of Health released figures this week that show southern primary health workers gave only 62 per cent of patients help to quit smoking during January to March - the second-lowest percentage in New Zealand.

Southern Primary Health Organisation chief executive Ian Macara said to improve statistics, patients and practitioners needed to develop a better approach.

"We need a multifaceted approach ... I don't think people out there are acting on the information available though."

Macara said the practices had also had some trouble collecting the right data.

"It is slightly easier for hospitals because it is a captive audience; where they deal in the hundreds of patients, we deal with thousands," he said.

Cancer Council health promotion advisor Skye Kimura-Paul said research shows smokers supported by health professionals have the highest quit rates.

"We know cessation works when people seek advice and use patches, lozenges and medications."

The figures show 95 per cent of patients identified as smokers in southern hospitals completed a quit smoking programme.

Macara said the organisation had developed practice support teams to help improve the primary care statistic next quarter.

The Southern District Health Board did not respond to questions before deadline.

Ad Feedback

- The Southland Times

Comments

Special offers
Opinion poll

Should April Miller be allowed to play in the presidents grade rugby competition?

Yes, if she can keep up with the other players, why not?

No, it's against the rules and it's not safe for her

Vote Result

Related story: Southland woman banned from men's rugby side

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content

Social Media
The Southland Times on Facebook

Subscribe to a digital replica of The Southland Times.

Digital edition

Subscribe to a digital replica of The Southland Times.

Click here to read our free community newspapers from around the region.

Community newspapers

Click here to read our free community newspapers from around the region online.

Southland Times subscriber news and information.

Subscriber services

Southland Times subscriber news and information.

Click here for information about advertising with The Southland Times.

Advertise

Click here for information about advertising with The Southland Times.