I was asked in May this year to give a presentation on the use of social media in smoking cessation at the Primary Care and Public Health Conference in Birmingham. My knowledge was quite limited on most things IT related, I must also confess to being quite baffled at times by the language floating around the office eg 'tweeting', 'hash tagging' and 'poking'. However, although I am no IT expert and would be unable to demonstrate the technical side of social media interventions, I am capable of demonstrating how the Hull and East Riding Stop Smoking Service (HERSSS) has embraced aspects of social media to enhance and expand service delivery.
Currently there are around 10 million adult smokers in the UK. Hull has the highest prevalence rates in the country of adult smokers at 29.3 per cent and within the routine and manual group at 33 per cent. Approximately half of all smokers will eventually die from their addiction, smoking is the leading preventable cause of death worldwide.