Redesigned Site Features Information on COVID-19 and Tobacco Use
OKLAHOMA CITY – April 9, 2020 – Visitors to the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline website will experience a fresh, new user-friendly website that aims to help Oklahomans quit tobacco, live tobacco free and reduce their risks of serious health issues, including complications from COVID-19.
OKhelpline.com has provided FREE cessation services for Oklahomans since 2003 that have helped tens of thousands of Oklahomans successfully quit tobacco. Through FREE services, resources, a Helpline community and more, the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline, funded by the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET), supports tobacco users during their quit journey and to stay quit. The redesigned Helpline website also provides tools for friends and family supporting a quitter, and free materials for health care providers and guidance for employers seeking to create tobacco-free workplaces.
“We are excited to provide Helpline resources and information in a relatable, user-friendly format,” said Julie Bisbee, TSET executive director. “The improved Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline website makes it easier for every tobacco user in Oklahoma to find the services and support they need to quit tobacco for good.”
In the works for several months, the redesigned OKhelpline.com, includes information on how the Helpline can support tobacco users during stressful times, including during the emergency response to COVID-19. The disruption and uncertainty of COVID-19 can be challenging for tobacco users, as stress is a main motivator for tobacco use. Since the virus attacks the lungs, those who smoke or vape could be more vulnerable to infection because their lung health is already compromised, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. One way to reduce the risk of serious illness is to quit smoking and vaping.
“There has never been a better time to quit tobacco than now,” said Paola Klein, Oklahoma Tobacco coordinator. “Signing up at OKhelpline.com is a quick way to start the process. It’s also a great resource for quitters who need help staying quit right now.”
Revised navigation and simplified information improve visitor access to services offered by OKhelpline.com. Specific pages were developed for SoonerCare members, Native Americans, smokeless users, vapers, youth and women who are pregnant or may become pregnant. In addition, a new page was developed to walk potential registrants through the Helpline process to help them know what to expect, answer questions and encourage tobacco users to sign up for services.
To learn more about the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline and to explore the new website, visit OKhelpline.com. You can also connect with the Helpline through social media by liking the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline on Facebook or following @OKhelpline on Twitter and Instagram.
The Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline is a FREE service for Oklahomans wanting to quit tobacco. Funding is primarily provided by the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET), in partnership with the Oklahoma State Department of Health, Oklahoma Health Care Authority, Oklahoma Employees Group Insurance Division and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline has served more than 365,000 Oklahomans since 2003 and was ranked the top quitline for reaching tobacco users seeking treatment in FY2013 by the North American Quitline Consortium.
The Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) serves as a partner and bridge builder for organizations working towards shaping a healthier future for all Oklahomans. TSET provides leadership at the intersections of health by working with local coalitions and initiatives across the state, by cultivating innovative and life-changing research, and by working across public and private sectors to develop, support, implement and evaluate creative strategies to take advantage of emerging opportunities to improve the public’s health. TSET – Better Lives Through Better Health. To learn more go to: www.ok.gov/tset.