Hope Clinic in Suva, Fiji, was awarded a certificate of recognition on Monday by the World Health Organization for its tobacco control efforts and the personalised services provided for people addicted to smoking.
Fiji health and medical services minister Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete awarded the certificate and medal of recognition to Hope Clinic for its services and campaigns in tobacco control.
Fiji Mission (FM) president Pastor Nasoni Lutunaliwa received the award on behalf of Hope Clinic and the Church in Fiji, stating, “we can only praise God for using Hope Clinic to minister to the masses in Fiji on wellness and healthy living.
“The smoking cessation service provided at the clinic is an extension of our health message and every church member should be helping their friends, workmates and family members struggling to quit smoking.
“They are to be directed to the clinic to get professional advice and help to enjoy more of what life has to offer.”
Dr Waqainabete congratulated Hope Clinic for its commitment to tobacco control.
“It is a fact that tobacco kills. [More than] eight million people die every year globally from smoking-related illnesses,” he said.
According to Dr Waqainabete, there are now five cessation hubs in Fiji, including Hope Clinic, offering intensive tobacco counselling and treatment to tobacco users attempting to quit smoking.
“We hope to increase this number, and we appreciate the partnership we have with the Church in ensuring many are made aware of the risks of smoking to them and their family members,” he said.
Hope Clinic director Dr Akuila Tabuavou praised God for the award and thanked WHO for entrusting the program with them.
He acknowledged former director Dr Alipate Vakamocea for securing the program as it corresponds with Adventist health beliefs.
“We will continue to provide the smoking cessation program and counselling at Hope Clinic and anyone with the desire to quit smoking can visit us at any time,” said Dr Tabuavou.