Smokers are 14 times more likely to contract the novel coronavirus compared to those who do not smoke, according to the head of a Turkish anti-addiction group.

“Using tobacco and tobacco products increases the risk of catching the coronavirus. Therefore, avoiding all addictive substances plays an important role in protecting ourselves against the virus,” Professor Mucahit Ozturk, president of anti-addiction group Turkish Green Crescent, also known as Yesilay, told Anadolu Agency.

Ozturk underscored that as addictions seriously harm physical health and weaken the immune system, they could lead to death as they have negative impacts on the treatment process.

Read more: Smokers at greater risk of contracting COVID-19: Expert