By Neeraj Gangal
Subscribers must pay $15 receive texts from QuitSmoke programme.
phone giant as du has launched QuitSmoke, an SMS text messages offering
smokers “tips that motivate and prompt them to perform day to day actions that
will help them quit smoking.”
any du subscriber that takes up the offer will be charged AED1 per day for the
daily text, amounting to AED56 ($15.24) for the eight week programme.
in general are becoming increasingly conscious of health and wellness,” said
Farid Faraidooni, chief commercial officer at du.
a telecom service provider we can leverage our network… in order to promote
healthy living. We have plans to further enlarge the scope of such health
initiatives, which we will announce in due course,” he added.
is a major healthcare issue in the region and statistics released last summer
as part of the UAE’s anti-smoking campaign found that the rate of consumption
of tobacco products is increasing amongst women and at least fourteen percent
of all smokers in the UAE are women.
around a fifth of men smoke in the UAE, this figure rises to 42 percent among
17 year old males.
high profile global and local campaigns, statistics showed that the take up of
nicotine treatments to help smokers quit has been sluggish in the UAE.
report by Euromonitor International released last year showed that sales of
nicotine replacement therapies (NRT) – like patches, gum and lozenges –
increased in value share by just nine percent in 2009.
QuitSmoke option is part of du’s new Health Text service and comes as the
government-owned telecoms provider posted a full-year profit of AED1.31bn
($357m) for 2010 and royalty fees paid surged 43 percent to AED264m ($71m).
I believe the QuitSmoke campaign could have been a great Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative from Du had it been offered as a complementary service. Promoting healthy living is after all, the obligation of any government.