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IDPH expands nicotine replacement therapy offer

Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) is announcing an expansion of the free nicotine replacement program launched last year for Iowans who enroll in Quitline Iowa.

The current offer has been extended beginning July 1. Any participant who enrolls in the no-cost program is eligible for eight weeks of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT).

“Extending this offer gives Iowans who need help quitting smoking or using smokeless tobacco a greater incentive to enroll in Quitline Iowa,” said IDPH Director Gerd Clabaugh. “The longer an individual has access to NRT, the more likely they are to stay tobacco-free. It’s hoped that by expanding access to nicotine replacement patches, lozenges or gum, those struggling with withdrawal symptoms will be more likely to succeed in quitting for good.”

In Iowa, 18.1 percent of adults smoke. Tobacco is the leading cause of death for Iowans, taking the lives of more than 4,400 adults each year. The estimated annual Iowa health care costs directly associated with tobacco use now total $1 billion.

Iowans can take advantage of the program by calling 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669), or visiting www.quitlineiowa.org to enroll.

The program offers access to a trained Quit Coach® who will help develop a quitting plan and determine which NRT offering is best for each individual. Services include:

• Preparing participants for their quit date

• Providing tips and support to live in a smoke-free environment

• Offering advice and information on medications that may help with withdrawal symptoms

Registration specialists and Quit Coaches® are available 24 hours a day.

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