THURSDAY, March 28 (HealthDay News) -- A new round of ads featuring emotionally charged tales of smokers who have suffered the ravages of smoking are on the way, federal health officials announced Thursday.
"Last year's campaign exceeded our very high expectations, and this year's campaign continues in that vein of showing the realities of smoking," Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said during a late-morning press conference.
"It takes what we as doctors see day in and day out and draws back the curtain from the examining room and shows the realities smokers live with day in and day out," he said.
These ads work, Frieden said. "They save lives and they save money," he said. "Today and every day this year, more than 1,200 people will be killed by tobacco, and today and throughout this year 8 million people are living with disease, disability and disfigurement caused by tobacco -- that's the reality."
Building on the success of the first ads released last year, the new ads will air on TV and radio and appear on billboards starting April 1 and run for 12 weeks, according to the CDC.
Dr. Jonathan Whiteson, director of the cardiac and pulmonary wellness and rehabilitation program at the Rusk Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, said the graphic ads can get current and potential smokers to take note.
"But these campaigns must be followed by comprehensive programs -- and that means government spending -- to help people quit and stay quit," Whiteson said.
The new ads tell highly emotional stories of real smokers whose lives were changed for the worse by smoking, and also of those who suffered from being exposed to secondhand smoke.
People featured in the ads have a variety of smoking-related conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD),
All rights reserved