Less than a third of people diagnosed with lung cancer will survive the first year of the disease, a health chief has warned.
The director of health and wellbeing at Public Health England, Kevin Fenton, was speaking as part of Stoptober, a campaign to get smokers to quit for 28 days.
We are seeing worrying levels of smoking among women which is clearly having an impact on their health and reported cases of lung cancer. Smoking is one of the main causes of lung cancer, and survival rates are very poor. Less than a third of people diagnosed with lung cancer will survive the first year, and only 8% will still be alive five years later.
That is why it is important that people give Stoptobera go. If smokers can stop for 28-days they are five times more likely to be able remain smoke-free for good.
– Director of health and wellbeing at Public Health England Kevin Fenton
Female smokers are being urged to quit as part of Stoptober after data from the UK Cancer Information Service showed more women are diagnosed with lung cancer than men.
The number of female lung cancer patients has slowly risen since 1990, while the number of men diagnosed with the disease has rapidly declined.
In 1990, 32.6 of every 100,000 women in England suffered from lung cancer but figures from 2011 show that number has crept up to 39 out of every 100,000, according to data from the UK Cancer Information Service.
Health chiefs at Public Health England are urging smokers to take part in Stoptober - the annual challenge to get smokers to quit for a month en masse - which starts today.
Research has shown that people who stop smoking for 28 days are five times more likely to stay smoke-free.
Chief Medical Officer Professor Dame Sally Davies, the Government's principle medical adviser, has called on the nation's eight million smokers to take part in "Stoptober" which challenges smokers to quit for a month.
Health minister Norman Lamb, who revealed he quit smoking last week, said the cost of the campaign was about "a couple of million" pounds.
He told BBC Breakfast:
It costs the NHS over £2.7 billion a year, over 1,200 people admitted to hospital every day as a result of smoking, so this is an enormous killer.
With the number of lives that are lost, and the number of families that are destroyed as a result of that, surely to commit a bit of resource to a campaign that could result in saving lives is worthwhile.