Make a promise to quit during lung cancer awareness month

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (November 21, 2013) – Today has been designated as the 38th Great American Smokeout by the American Cancer Society.

Lung cancer is the leading cause of preventable and premature cancer deaths in the United States and Indiana.

It kills an estimated 150,000 Americans and approximately 3,800 Hoosiers each year.

Smoking accounts for at least 30 percent of all cancer deaths.

People who quit smoking significantly reduce their risk of developing cancer and other chronic diseases.

“The positive health effects of quitting smoking begin immediately,” said State Health Commissioner William VanNess, M.D. “Within 20 minutes, blood pressure and pulse return to normal levels. Within 72 hours, the chance of a heart attack drops and sense of smell and taste begin to return.”

The Great American Smokeout is a day to commit to being tobacco free.

Local community events at worksites, schools, hospitals and other community businesses are also being held by tobacco control coalitions statewide. For more information about local tobacco control coalitions, visit

Indiana residents can receive free help in quitting tobacco by calling 1-800-QUIT-NOW or visiting

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