Five Counties Win Awards for Tobacco Work from the Arizona Department of Health Services

PHOENIX — Five Arizona counties received awards for their outstanding work in tobacco control and chronic disease prevention recently as the Arizona Department of Health Services Bureau of Tobacco and Chronic Disease (ADHS BTCD) premiered their Most Valuable Partner Awards.  This program was developed to recognize and celebrate the outstanding work of all tobacco and chronic disease prevention partners statewide.

“These outstanding and often grassroots programs are to be congratulated and have contributed to the steady decrease in tobacco use in our state,” Wayne Tormala, Bureau Chief, ADHS BTCD said. “Smoking prevalence is down to 15% in Arizona, compared to the nation’s 19%.” Tormala also cites laws curtailing smoking in public places, and overall cost as factors for Arizona’s reduced rates.

Seven of the eleven awards were Awards of Excellence and four were Awards of Achievement. The five counties receiving the awards were Cochise, Maricopa, Mohave, Pinal and Yuma. See below for a full list of awardees:

Awards of Excellence

Suzanne Hagle from Cochise County accepts the Award of Excellence from ADHS BTCD Bureau Chief Wayne Tormala

Reducing Initiation of Tobacco Use Among Youth:

“Cochise County Tobacco & Chronic Disease Prevention – Sport, Play & Activity Recreation for Kids (SPARK) pilot program”- Cochise County

Synopsis: Cochise County piloted a chronic disease prevention and physical activity program for school age children in the Douglas Unified School District. This program filled a gap that was caused by lost funding for physical activity in the elementary schools. Interactive lessons included physical activity and the relationship of physical activity and nutrition to chronic disease prevention and management.

 

Lee Connelly and Connie Weare from Maricopa County accept the Award of Excellence from Wayne Tormala

Reducing Exposure to Secondhand Smoke:

“IGNITE (Influence, Guide, Network for Intercollegiate Tobacco Education”- Maricopa County

Synopsis: IGNITE chose to focus their efforts on Smoke-Free College Campuses. The IGNITE program is a college advocacy program that affects individual and systems level changes that promote clean air and tobacco free lifestyles among 18-24 year olds.

Promoting Smoking Cessation and Help Smokers Quit:

Tami Freed, Lee Connelly and Lydia George accept the Award of Excellence

“Maricopa County Quit Tobacco (QT) Employee Cessation Classes” – Maricopa County

Synopsis: Maricopa County provided direction and education to its employees and assisted worksites to create tobacco-free environments. The goal being lower smoking rates for County employees. The program offers cessation classes to Maricopa County employees at different worksites.

  
                                                                                                                                 
Identifying and Eliminating Tobacco Related Disparities:

Lee Connelly, Sue Bergquist, Tami Freed, Laurie Thomas and Joanna Newton accept the award from Wayne Tormala (second from left)

“UMOM Great American Smokeout (GASO) Event” – Maricopa County

Synopsis: This was a three day event to educate adults and children in transitional housing about the dangers of secondhand smoke. On the annual American Cancer Society’s Great American Smokeout, smokers were encouraged to quit for the day and given Arizona Smokers’ Helpline referrals and information to help them quit for a lifetime. The event also included a wellness fair and it was all featured on local television.

Four Leading Tobacco-Related Causes of Death in Arizona:

Suzanne Hagle Accepts Award of Excellence from Tormala

“Cochise County Government Enhanced Employee Wellness Pilot Program”

Synopsis: Active Adults Program is a comprehensive, evidence-based prevention program. County employees provided fitness and nutrition outreach and education, to 1,100 County employees to align themselves with the Five Pathways to Wellness (tobacco prevention & cessation; healthy nutrition and weight control; barrier-free active lifestyles; age, gender, and risk appropriate health screenings; and access to quality treatment).

Joanna Newton, Tami Freed, Sue Bergquist, Lydia George, Gladys Cedillos, Lee Connelly and Teresa Aseret-Manygoats of Maricopa County accept the Award of Excellence

Outreach or Communication Event:

 “ASHLine referrals from community outreach events”- Maricopa County

Synopsis: Through a wide variety of community outreach events Maricopa County targeted disparate populations for tobacco cessation through referrals to the Arizona Smokers’ Helpline.

 

 

 

 

 

Promoting Public Policies that Reduce the Impact of Commercial Tobacco Use:

“Kingman Youth Coalition Beating Up Teen Tobacco (KYCBUTT),” – Mohave County

Susan Williams from Mohave County accepts the Award of Excellence from Tormala

Synopsis: KYCBUTTs developed educational lessons to deliver to their peers on the hazards of tobacco use and secondhand smoke. In additionyouth engaged in community education and outreach activities.

 

 

 

 

 

Awards of Achievement

Connie Weare of Maricopa County accepts the Award of Achievement

Reducing Initiation of Tobacco Use among Youth:

“Tobacco Free SLOGO Contest”- Maricopa County

Synopsis: Maricopa County held a slogan and logo (SLOGO) poster contest. A poster contest format was given to 15,000 students at Title I schools and Boys and Girls Clubs. This was an opportunity to educate their peers about the dangers of tobacco.

 

Lee Connelly and Sue Bergquist from Maricopa County accept the Award of Achievement from Tormala

Reducing Exposure to Secondhand Smoke:

“Multi-Housing Smoke-Free Policy Technical Assistance” – Maricopa County

Synopsis: Maricopa County provided assistance to multi-housing properties wanting to go smoke-free. This included presentations for residents, referrals to the Arizona Smokers’ Helpline (ASHLine), and sample materials: house rules and lease addendums. Smoke-free housing reduces secondhand smoke exposure for tenants and reduces insurance costs, clean up, risk of fire, and reduces time vacant for property owners.

Jan Vidimos from Pinal County Accepts the Award of Achievement

Four Leading Tobacco-Related Causes of Death in Arizona:

“An Ounce of Prevention…” – Pinal County

Synopsis: Through its School Health Liaison Program Pinal County works with schools to improve student health and prevent chronic diseases

 

 Outreach or Communication Event:

“Youth Coalition Efforts” – Yuma County

Laura Avilla from Yuma County accepts the Award of Achievement from Tormala

Synopsis: Yuma County utilized the Health Ambassadors group at the junior high schools to help reduce the initiation of tobacco use among youth and increase tobacco prevention awareness in its County by engaging youth in the delivery of the tobacco prevention message.

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About ADHS BTCD

Through the tax on tobacco, the Arizona Department of Health Services Bureau of Tobacco and Chronic Disease (ADHS BTCD) is the only program working to prevent youth from starting tobacco use and providing free services to help adults quit tobacco. ADHS BTCD also provides prevention information and management education for chronic diseases including the four leading causes of death in Arizona — heart disease, stroke, cancer and pulmonary disease.

About Wayne Tormala

Dedicating his entire career to human service, Wayne has provided leadership at the local, national and global levels in programs addressing issues of public health, mental illness, the environment, world hunger, poverty, and economic justice. Currently, he is the Bureau Chief for the Bureau of Tobacco and Chronic Disease at the Arizona Department of Health Services where he oversees all aspects of tobacco prevention/cessation programming and the prevention/management of chronic diseases, including diabetes, cancer, stroke, asthma, and heart and lung disease.

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