Concerns have been raised after a report revealed a dramatic drop in the number of people trying to quit smoking.

Latest figures from NHS Scotland show that, in Renfrewshire, just over 2,000 attempts to kick the habit were made in 2016/17 – less than half the total for 2011/12, which stood at more than 5,000.

And it is a similar picture in East Renfrewshire, where attempts to quit fell by around 750 over that period, from 1,344 to 587.

Maurice Golden, who represents both areas in his role as Conservative MSP for West Scotland, has called for a renewed effort to help smokers stub it out.

He said: “While great strides have been made in recent years to cut the number of smokers, it is disappointing to see the number of attempts to quit fall significantly.

“I hope these figures will serve as a wake-up call to the SNP government and encourage them to do more to fund smoking cessation campaigns.”

However, the Scottish Government defended its efforts to support smokers who are keen to quit.

A spokesperson said: “The number of people attempting to quit is falling across the UK. Indeed, it has fallen twice as fast in England than in Scotland since 2015.

“Quitting is the single most important action a smoker can do to improve their health.

“We would encourage any smoker to try quitting their own way and to make use of the free stop-smoking support available to them.”

For advice on how to kick the habit, visit