New U.S. President Barack Obama could serve as a global model about the difficulties people face when they smoke—and then try to quit, family physicians are saying.
Obama has been a smoker for many years, and tried unsuccessfully to quit on numerous occasions, according to his physician, Dr. David Scheiner.
His struggle, doctors say, could serve as an illustration as to why smoking jeopardizes a person’s health. Even more importantly, if Obama successfully kicks the habit while in office, he will serve as a role model to millions.
Obama has said that he will not smoke while inside the White House. He also says, because of health considerations, he does not smoke while around his children.
Dr. Anthony Adkins praises Obama for his honesty on the smoking issue, and says it will help other people to acknowledge that they need help overcoming the habit.
Adkins is a family doctor and works for Lima Community Health Center (Lima, OH) as director of minority health.
Obama’s most important contribution, says Dr. Carolyn Britton with the National Medical Association, is that Obama has not given up, and he has publicly declared he will not give up the fight. The new President understands that his future health depends on him kicking the habit.
Some doctors have also expressed a hope that Obama will serve as an example for men in the black community especially, who tend to smoke at a higher rate than white men.