Tobacco Control Program

Tobacco Control Program

Main Contact information: Jennifer Burris wellness@swlahec.com

The Tobacco Control Department serves as a community partner for the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals Tobacco Control Program and The Rapides Foundation. The department follows the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention Office of Smoking and Health goals to prevent initiation of tobacco use among young people, eliminate exposure to secondhand smoke, promote cessation among adults and young people who use tobacco, identify and eliminate disparities among specific populations groups, and to cultivate and maintain statewide infrastructure for tobacco prevention and control efforts.  The Tobacco Control Coordinator preserves the CDC standards by; 1.) Providing community education on the dangers of tobacco use and second-hand smoke, 2.) Assisting local school boards with the development of tobacco-free school campus policies or strengthen current policies, 3.) Raising awareness in communities about the free cessation services available in Louisiana, 4.)  Providing support to local governments who are interested in strengthening their local ordinances in order to protect the public’s health from second hand smoke , 5.) Increasing the number of health care providers who are participating in the state’s Fax to Quit Program and, 6.) Working with local business leaders to protect and improve the health of their workers by providing education and cessation services.

The Fax-To-Quit Louisiana program is a Health Systems approach designed to increase provider’s adherence to the Public Health Service Clinical Practice Guidelines in treating tobacco dependence and use. It is a treatment extension a clinician could provide to his/her patients. After providing brief intervention to their patients for tobacco cessation, clinicians can refer patients through fax-referral using Fax-To-Quit Louisiana program, to the LA Tobacco Quit line that provides free tobacco cessation counseling to Louisiana residents 13 years and older (patients  who are 13 to 17 years old, do not need parental consent to receive LA Tobacco Quit line counseling). Tobacco cessation counseling by LA Tobacco Quit line is at no cost to the patient or the referring clinician.

Southwest Louisiana Area Health Education Center also provides cessation as a fee-for -service for company employees. The Tobacco Control Department has two Cessations Counselors that are trained to provide smoking cessation in support group facilitation.

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