Quitting smoking a good defense vs COVID-19, says MMDA officials

Published July 29, 2021, 11:14 AM

by Ellson Quismorio

Here’s a simple move that you can take as a defense against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19): stop smoking.

(Photo by Uitbundig/ Unsplash)

“Now is the best time to quit smoking,” Dr. Loida Alzona, head of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority’s (MMDA) Health and Environmental Protection Office, said in a statement Thursday, July 29.

According to Alzona, staying healthy is necessary since the pandemic is not yet over.

“Practicing healthy habits, discontinuing tobacco consumption, and observing minimum public health standards such as wearing of face masks and face shields, frequent washing of hands, and the observation of physical distancing must be complied at all times to avoid spreading or contracting the coronavirus,” she emphasized.

“In addition, smokers who have tested positive for COVID-19 are more likely to experience severe symptoms,” noted the doctor.

COVID-19 is a deadly respiratory disease. These past few weeks, local authorities have been scrambling to prevent the spread of the more aggressive Delta variant of the disease, which is said to be exponentially more transmissible compared to the initial variants.

MMDA Chairman Benhur Abalos reckoned that the best defense against any COVID-19 variant, including Delta variant, is a combination of consistent adherence to the minimum public health protocols, vaccination, and having healthy lungs.

“While the government is implementing response against COVID-19, the public play a vital role in protecting their own health and well-being. Let us strictly follow the health protocols set by the DOH (Department of Health) and stop smoking and vaping to keep yourself healthy from any infectious disease,” Abalos said in the same statement.