New Tobacco Quitline Services for New Year, New Smoke-free Life

Baltimore, MD (December 3, 2012) — The Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH), Center for Tobacco Prevention and Control (CTPC) today announced new services for the Maryland Tobacco Quitline, 1-800-QUIT-NOW, just in time to help Marylanders to quit smoking in the new year.

Since 2006, the Maryland Tobacco Quitline has provided free proactive and reactive tobacco cessation counseling, along with Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) to Marylanders. Effective December 1, 2012, the Quitline now also offers these key enhancements: counselors available live 24/7; counseling services provided to teens (previously, services were available only to adults); an intensive pregnancy support program; enhanced online support offered through Web Coach®, now including NRT (https://www.quitnow.net/maryland); and a text support program, Text2Quit®.

“Many smokers use the New Year’s holiday as motivation to quit,” said Dr. Joshua M. Sharfstein, Secretary of DHMH. “This may be the most important resolution a soon-to-be-former-smoker ever makes.”

Since its establishment in 2006, the Quitline has served over 100,000 residents, and has a 97 percent customer satisfaction rate. Individuals using quitlines have success rates up to seven times greater than those trying to quit alone.

CTPC also will host a free Webinar, “Preparing to Quit,” from noon to 12:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 20, to help those who plan New Year’s resolutions to give up smoking.

During the webinar, participants will learn how the Quitline helps individuals develop a personalized Quit Plan, learn how to cope with triggers for tobacco use, find out about the health benefits of quitting, and learn about the free services the Quitline offers, including a demonstration of the new Web Coach® and Text2Quit® services. Register for the webinar at https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/447046954.

It will be a new year — try the new Quitline services, and start a new smoke-free life!

Quitline services and the webinar are available through a contract with Alere Wellbeing. Established in 1984, Alere has become the national leader in tobacco dependence treatment, currently providing services for 28 state quitlines. Alere has been the service provider for the Maryland Tobacco Quitline since it was established in 2006. 
 

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Lead poisoning is one of the most common environmental child health problems in the United States and effects 3 to 4 million children. Lead is especially harmful to children younger than 6, but anyone who eats, drinks, or breathes something which has too much lead can get lead poisoning. Although chipping paint and paint dust are the most common sources of lead, lead can also be found in ceramic cups and dishes, fishing sinkers, craft supplies, leaded crystal, spray paint, and even in soil and water.

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 Pictured (left to right): Mimi Dean, Director of Prevention, Worcester County Health Department, Rebecca Jones, Health Officer, Worcester County Health Department, Marty Pusey, Snow Hill Rotary Club, Chris Welch, President, Snow Hill Rotary Club.

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