Mental Health and Community Wellness Minister Sarah Guillemard announced last week that Manitoba is providing $300,000 to expand the Tobacco Quit Card and Counselling Program for all regional health authorities in the province.

“Quitting smoking is a complicated process that can take many tries. We want to support all Manitobans to quit smoking by providing resources and counselling, which will support their health and well-being,” says Guillemard. “We are thrilled to help Shared Health expand this successful program to offer supports to smokers across the province.”

The Tobacco Quit Card and Counselling Program is managed by Shared Health and targets lower-income people who desire to quit smoking.

The minister adds that the additional funding will expand access to nicotine replacement therapy to people throughout rural and northern Manitoba.

Tobacco use is a significant factor in chronic disease and remains the leading cause of preventable death in Canada.

According to the Canadian Cancer Society, it is also the most significant risk factor for cancer, causing about 45,000 deaths per year.