Navigation Links
Quitting Smoking Saves Lives and Money: New American Lung Association Report Finds Most States Failing to Adequately Protect Residents and Their Bottom Line
Date:11/13/2008

-Treatments and Services Provided by Each State to Help Smokers Quit Now Available at http://www.lungusa.org-

WASHINGTON, Nov. 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- If you smoke, quitting can save you money as well as your life. However, where you live can help or hurt your ability to quit. According to a new report, Helping Smokers Quit: State Cessation Coverage, released today by the American Lung Association, states are missing a big opportunity to help smokers quit and to save themselves money by covering comprehensive tobacco treatments.

"Millions of dollars and countless lives could be saved each year if more smokers quit," said Bernadette Toomey, President and CEO of the American Lung Association. "Smoking's devastating toll in death and suffering is well known. Nearly every family has been touched by tobacco-related illness. But what's less known is the tremendous burden that treating these ailments places on our economy. States cannot continue to ignore this unfortunate reality."

Recent studies estimate that lifetime savings in tobacco-related health expenditures for every former smoker total more than $20,000. Furthermore, employers and insurance plans could save up to $210 per year for every covered smoker who quits. For each pregnant woman who quits smoking, there is a potential cost savings to the U.S. health care system of $881 with each premature birth prevented.

"One adult in five smokes; that's more than 43 million Americans," said Toomey. "Helping smokers quit benefits us all - smokers and nonsmokers alike. Unfortunately, many smokers lack access to the tools needed to help them succeed. Providing these treatments and tools as a fully-covered, comprehensive insurance benefit increases the willingness of smokers to try to quit and improves their likelihood of success."

The American Lung Association calls upon each state to provide all Medicaid recipients and state employees with comprehensive, easily-accessible tobacco cessation medications and counseling. The Lung Association recommends states eliminate artificial barriers such as co-pays, limits on the length of treatment and prior authorization requirements that can make it harder for smokers to get the help they need. Eliminating these barriers is critically important for people with limited incomes, because they create obstacles that greatly discourage these smokers from getting the help they need.

The Lung Association recommends that private insurance plans should also offer comprehensive cessation coverage and encourages states to require all insurance companies to cover these treatments. To date, only eight states (California, Colorado, Maryland, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota and Rhode Island) have enacted legislative or regulatory standards mandating private health insurance companies to provide cessation coverage.

Comprehensive coverage requires providing open access to the seven cessation medications and three forms of counseling recommended to treat nicotine addiction by the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). These medications include over-the-counter and prescription nicotine-replacement-therapies and two non-nicotine prescription drugs: bupropion, varenicline. According to HHS, counseling should include at least four individual, group or telephone therapy sessions lasting no less than 10 minutes each.

"Smoking is widely recognized as a disease of nicotine addiction," said Norman Edelman, M.D., Chief Medical Officer for the American Lung Association. "Just like any other health condition, patients respond differently to various tobacco cessation treatments. Most smokers try to quit more than once and may need to try different treatments in subsequent attempts. States must make it easier for smokers to access all recommended treatments. There is no one size fits all therapy."

Presently, only seven states provide comprehensive coverage for Medicaid recipients: Indiana, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nebraska, Nevada, Oregon and Pennsylvania. Six states do not cover cessation treatments for Medicaid recipients: Alabama, Connecticut, Georgia, Kentucky, Missouri and Tennessee. Among the states that provide Medicaid coverage for tobacco cessation treatments, most impose artificial barriers to coverage including sometimes costly co-pays and limitations on the duration of treatments.

Just six states provide comprehensive cessation coverage for state employees. Those states are Alabama, Illinois, Maine, Nevada, North Dakota and New Mexico. Beyond that, 38 states cover at least some cessation medications, leaving much room for needed improvement.

"The American Lung Association is committed to helping smokers quit," said Toomey. "We offer several free or low cost services such as our Freedom From Smoking Program that helps thousands of people quit smoking each year. Still, this is by no means a substitute for the kind of support that is urgently needed from each and every state across the country."

Information on American Lung Association cessation services, including our Freedom from Smoking program, can be accessed by calling the Lung Helpline at 1-800-LUNGUSA or by visiting http://www.lungusa.org.

The new Helping Smokers Quit: State Cessation Coverage report also provides an index of cessation services and treatments offered in each state. This information can be found by visiting http://www.lungusa.org.

About the American Lung Association: Beginning our second century, the American Lung Association is the leading organization working to prevent lung disease and promote lung health. Lung disease death rates are currently increasing while other major causes of death are declining. The American Lung Association funds vital research on the causes of and treatments for lung disease. With the generous support of the public, the American Lung Association is "Improving life, one breath at a time." For more information about the American Lung Association, a Charity Navigator Four Star Charity, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNG-USA (1-800-586-4872) or log on to http://www.lungusa.org.


'/>"/>
SOURCE American Lung Association
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Trouble quitting?: A new Pitt-Carnegie Mellon smoking study may reveal why
2. Quitting Isnt That Easy
3. Genes May Play Role in Quitting Smoking
4. MultiVu Video Feed: FREE NICOTINE REPLACEMENT THERAPY (NRT) TO BE OFFERED TO REGISTERED PILOTS INTERESTED IN QUITTING RELIEF IN LIGHT OF RECENT FAA RULINGS
5. Nicotine Replacement Therapy Is Safe, Effective and Can Help Reverse Mental Acuity Deficits in Smokers Who Are Quitting, Including Commercial and Private Pilots
6. Quitting smoking -- its never too late
7. Quitting Marijuana Just as Hard as Quitting Cigarettes
8. New research review shows that your family doctor may be the key to quitting smoking
9. Nicotine-Reduced Cigarettes Could Boost Quitting
10. Age affects motivation for quitting smoking
11. Study: Smoking Ban Would Help Reduce Heart Attack Admissions
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/9/2016)... ... February 09, 2016 , ... ... to expand access to affordable hearing aids , increase industry transparency, and ... in the United States. , “For the average consumer, the hearing aid industry ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... ... February 09, 2016 , ... ... sealing company , is proud to announce that many of their franchises have ... customer service. The hard surface restoration franchises received customer recognition through positive reviews ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... 08, 2016 , ... The Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology ... site houses a wealth of federal resources that businesses can leverage to further ... transfer (T2). As a network of over 300 federal laboratories, the FLC’s mission ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... ... who has struggled to quit smoking, a man who has struggled with hair loss – ... his problems – and he did. Now Nabat, a serial entrepreneur featured as the October ... to the world and better people's lives. His own experience with nicotine addiction led to ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... 2016 , ... The Bell Agency, a full service insurance ... their ongoing community enrichment program. The current campaign fundraises for Angels & Doves, ... being accepted at: http://www.angelsanddoves.com/donate.html . , Angels & Doves was founded in ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/9/2016)... DUBLIN , Feb. 9, 2016  Jazz Pharmaceuticals ... will report its 2015 fourth quarter and full year ... close of the financial markets.  Company management will host ... 4:30 p.m. EST/9:30 p.m. GMT to discuss fourth quarter ... business and financial update and guidance for 2016 financial ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... February 9, 2016 Amarantus BioScience ... on developing products for Regenerative Medicine, Neurology and Orphan ... presenting company at Source Capital Group,s 2016 Disruptive Growth ... 2016 in New York City . ... 10, 2016 at 12:30 pm by Gerald E. ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... , Feb. 9, 2016 The new report "Global Blood Monitoring ... Acuity Business Research & Consulting group reveals that global market for ... million in 2014 and expected to grow to US$ 24,830.1 million ... North America , Europe ... , Middle-East and Africa ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: