Smoking increases the risk of multiple diseases including diabetes, lung disease, heart disease, kidney disease, osteoporosis and many types of cancer.1
However a new study has uncovered the economic damage caused by smoking, and Victorian businesses are paying up to 43% of the bill. These workplace incurred, smoke related costs include an “estimated net workforce labour costs of $632 million in smoking breaks, $355.1 million in absenteeism and $149.2 million net costs from reduced production due to diminished workforce [by tobacco-related deaths],” Dr. Sarah White, Director of Quit Victoria, said in a statement.2
With 4427 Victorian deaths and 9% of the total disease burden in Victoria associated with smoking in 20113, this new evidence provides “good economic sense for businesses to support their staff to stop smoking through initiatives” such as:
- Smoke-free policies and programs
- Staff counselling,
- Workplace promotion of smoking-cessation education, resources and contacts including Quitline
- Funding or subsidisation for smoking cessation products (i.e. nicotine patches and gum)
- Adoption of health and wellbeing initiatives (i.e. The state government’s Achievement Program). To find out how WPCP can support you to implement the Achievement program in your business, contact Linda Hunt on 5143 8844, Wellington Primary Care Partnership
To find out more about this research follow this link.
Data sources:  https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/smoking-effects-on-your-body.  https://www.vichealth.vic.gov.au/media-and-resources/media-releases/up-in-smoke?utm_source=VicHealth%20Update&utm_campaign=VH%20Update%2020%20June%202018&utm_medium=Email.  The contribution of risk factors to disease burden in Victoria, 2011: Findings from the 2011 Australian Burden of Disease Study.