NEW ORLEANS – According to the recent State of Tobacco Control 2018 Report from the American Lung Association, the State of Louisiana received a failing grade (“F”) across several categories when it comes to helping Louisiana smokers.
“While progress is being made in the category of Smokefree Air (“B” grade), the report shows that all statewide partners still have a long way to go in improving the physical and financial health of Louisiana smokers,” says Mike Rogers, CEO of Smoking Cessation Trust Management Services.
“The Trust spent more than $13.3 million in 2017 to assist its Members and is committed to continue, until 2022, our support of qualified Trust Members who want to quit smoking cigarettes.”
To date, the Smoking Cessation Trust has reached more than 83,000 Louisiana smokers who have chosen to address their addiction. Statistics from the program show that approximately 33% of members quit during the initial try with the Trust.
At the end of the 10-year program, it is the Trust’s hope to have reached its goal of helping more than 200,000 Louisiana smokers quit.
“Tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable death and disease in the United States, and in Louisiana, the Trust strives to reach as many eligible smokers as possible and provide them with the free products and services they need to successfully quit,” added Rogers.
The report states that 22.8% (up from 21.9%) of Louisiana adults smoke, resulting in annual health care costs to Louisiana of $1.89 billion directly caused by smoking.
The result of a 14-year-long class action lawsuit Scott v. American Tobacco Co., the Smoking Cessation Trust was established to help fund cessation services for all Louisiana residents who smoked a cigarette prior to September 1, 1988.
Applying for benefits through the Smoking Cessation Trust only takes a few minutes online at www.SmokeFreeLA.org or via telephone at 504-529-5665 or (855) 259-6346.
If approved for inclusion in the Trust program, you will be eligible to receive completely free services that include: cessation medications, nicotine replacement therapy (gum, patch, lozenge, nasal spray), individual/group cessation counseling, telephone quit-line support, and/or intensive cessation support services.
By using these services, evidence suggests that participants will increase the success rate of attempts to stop smoking cigarettes (on average, it takes 8-11 quit attempts), and may help a committed quitter to successfully quit—for good.
Posted on Fri, February 2, 2018
by The Lafourche Gazette