CVS Health recently celebrated their one-year anniversary of their decision to stop tobacco sales with new data. The data, which showed the results of CVS’ smoking cessation campaign, revealed that “prescriptions for smoking cessation medications have increased by 63 percent on a monthly basis in the timeframe and visits to MinuteClinic for smoking cessation counseling were up 61 percent compared to the prior eight months.”
The smoking cessation program, which launched in September of 2014, aids in the counseling of more than 67,000 patients filling a first prescription for a smoking cessation drug or prescription nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) and also offers consultation to with thousands of smokers seeking advice about over-the-counter NRT products.
Further supporting the cessation program, results indicated that “purchases of these products increased 21 percent in September through December over the previous four months. Additionally, customers picked up 2.3 million tobacco cessation brochures at CVS/pharmacy.” The success of the program has shown that smoking cessation hubs, available information brochures and regular counseling can lead to a higher number of individuals quitting the use of tobacco.
"Approximately seven in ten smokers say they want to quit and about half attempt to quit each year. But challenges still exist, including the fact that fewer than half of smokers report being advised to stop smoking,” said Helena Foulkes, President, CVS/pharmacy. While quitting smoking can be difficult to quit, with the right programs and help in place it is possible to see an increase in smoking cessation.