KSWT in Yuma Covers Empower Pack at Desert Mesa Elementary

January 23, 2012

Empower Pack on KYMA 11 in Yuma

January 23, 2012

New Trust Commissioners Appointed

January 19, 2012

The Arizona Speaker of the House and President of the Senate approved four new appointments to the TRUST Commission, our statewide advisory group on the use, spending, and tracking of tobacco tax funds used for tobacco and chronic disease programming.  The four new members, each of whom bring tremendous added value to work, are:


Scott Leischow, PhD., is internationally known for his research and training regarding nicotine addiction and cessation practice, is in the process of moving from his position at the University of Arizona as Professor in the Colleges of Medicine & Public Health, and Associate Director at the Arizona Cancer Center, to serve in a research capacity at the Mayo Clinic & Hospitals.  Scott has been a long-time friend and advisor to our work, and brings considerable knowledge and perspective to our work.


Kelly Grose, Senior Vice President of the American Heart Association, brings a strong background of evidence-based programming and public policy development to our work in both tobacco control and chronic disease.  With heart disease still being the #1 cause of death, it is imperative that we ensure a strong sense of knowledge and leadership in this arena.


Edmundo Hidalgo, President and CEO of Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., brings high level leadership and knowledge regarding the economic and health concerns of Latinos/Latinas, both here in Arizona and along all borderlands.  This fills a critical gap in our efforts to navigate the social and political climates affecting the highest growing population in Arizona.  Edmundo is a long-time friend who is well-known for his abilities to translate “big picture” issues into localized, manageable efforts.


Sharlene Bozack, Chief Government Relations Officer of the American Cancer Society (Cancer Action Network), Great West Division, is another long-time supporter of public health concerns in Arizona, and has been instrumental in several policy developments improving the health of Arizonans who use tobacco.


Empower Pack Begins its Statewide Tour

January 19, 2012



The Empower Pack Puts on a show at Desert Mesa Elementary School in Yuma

The Empower Pack kicked off its statewide tour at Desert Mesa Elementary School  Wednesday afternoon with a live interactive performance for the students. The  acting troupe from the Phoenix Theater has collaborated with the Arizona  Department of Health Services, the Bureau of Tobacco and Chronic Disease and the  Bureau of Nutrition and Physical Activity to empower the youths of today to make  good decisions regarding nutrition, physical activity and avoiding tobacco. The  Empower Pack will continue to spread its message to children ages 8-11 as it  visits various schools throughout the state.

Read more:  http://www.yumasun.com/articles/empower-76038-nutrition-pack.html#ixzz1jv18oq1K

Maricopa County smokers trying to quit can get free help for 12 weeks

January 4, 2012

by Taylor Summers/KTAR

PHOENIX — One of the more popular New Year’s  resolutions every year comes from smokers hoping to kick  the habit.

The Maricopa County Health Department wants to help make  that easier. To do so, the department is working with the  quit smoking hotline, Ashline.

“Most of [Ashline’s] coaches are ex-smokers,” Wayne  Tormala, chief of the Bureau of Tobacco and Chronic  Disease, said. “They offer a lot of tailored coaching.”

What smokers might not know is if they are using the state  Medicaid program, AHCCCS, they can actually get 12 free  weeks of nicotine gum, patches, or medications. The hope  is that the money used from AHCCCS for this will be an  investment to prevent a larger cost burden in the future.

“The cost burden of smokers in Arizona has been estimated  by the Department of Health and Human Services to be over  $3 billion a year,” Tormala said. “When someone spends  about $6-8 bucks on cigarettes, it’s costing the state  about $40.”

Tormala says the combination of those nicotine medications  and support from Ashline can churn out a 50 percent  success rate when helping smokers quit, a far cry from the  three percent found in those who quit cold turkey.

To speak with Ashline, call 1-800-55-66-222.

ASHLine Featured in New Year’s Resolutions article from San Tan Valley Today.

January 4, 2012




Happy New Year from Today Publications

Happy New Year from Today Publications, we hope your year will be full of happiness and prosperity.

The most common resolutions for the New Year  include:   •    Shaping up or losing weight •    Quitting drinking or drinking less alcohol •    Quitting smoking •    Spending less time with TV or computer   One reason these goals typically top the resolution lists in December  but are forgotten by March is because people try to achieve them alone.   It doesn’t have to be that way this year. The Arizona Department of  Health Services (ADHS) will help you make the changes permanent – and  the help is free of charge!

“A plan and a pal are the keys to making your resolution work,” said  Will Humble, ADHS Director.  “Decide what you want to do and find  someone you can depend on to help you. I do the treadmill every night  with my son.  If I forget or am tired, he’s really good about reminding  me.”

Support is what helped thousands of Arizonans quit using tobacco.  The  Arizona Smokers’ Helpline is one of the most successful programs in the  country, in part because of its flexibility and accessibility.

If people  need a supportive voice, the hotline provides coaching by phone  (800-55-66-222). For those who are more word, text or email-based,  there’s online support. There’s even a new iPhone app to give would-be  quitters the help they need, as well as a Facebook page. Plus, the staff  at ASHLine can tell you about nicotine replacement therapies, and may  be able to help you get a free patch or prescription.

When it comes to shaping up or losing weight, ADHS has lots of web-based  resources.  Eatwellbewell.org is full of ideas on how to be active with  your family and make good choices about the foods you eat.

Myplate.gov  discusses the importance of balancing your diet.  The ADHS website has  other tips, as well, like how farmers markets can help you find fresh  fruits and vegetables. If you need help designing a fitness plan that  works for you, ADHS has that too.

For those who have a goal to stop drinking or reduce their consumption  of alcohol in 2012, ADHS can help.  ADHS provides a fact sheet with  helpful information about alcohol use. People also can access substance  abuse programs across the state by calling 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

No matter what your goals are for 2012, you can accomplish them. And we  can help.  Check out the Healthy Living website, which includes  inspiring stories from people at ADHS.

To comment on this article and others, please visit:  facebook.com/SanTanValleyNEWSor send us an email at  // <![CDATA[
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AZCentral: Maricopa County program to help smokers quit

January 4, 2012



County program has helpline, iPhone app

by Michelle Ye Hee Lee– Jan.  2, 2012 10:35 PM The  Republic | azcentral.com

Maricopa County has kicked off its annual push for a smoking-cessation  program for residents and employees who have resolved to quit smoking in the new  year.

Arizona’s smoking-cessation program is funded through the state Department of  Health Services and promoted by the counties. The state’s advertising campaign  for its free “quitline” — a telephone service with coaches to help those  quitting smoking — launched last week for Arizona residents.

The county’s six-week program with a cessation specialist begins today at the  county’s administration building in downtown Phoenix.

The ADHS recently launched a free iPhone application for residents who want  to track their personal progress and create a support network on their own. The  application also allows residents to call a “quit coach” when they need one.

With the renewed push to offer smoking-cessation services, Arizona Smokers’  Helpline Director Stephen Michael said the start of the new year is a fitting  time for residents to quit smoking. There are plenty of smokers making the same  resolution, so they can keep each other accountable, he said.

“This time of year, it’s OK to quit smoking, and it’s OK to be public about  it,” Michael said. “The two Number 1 resolutions is to lose weight and  quit smoking.”

Through the state and county programs, residents enrolled in the state’s  Medicaid program also can receive 12 weeks of free medication, including  nicotine gum, patches and lozenges.

The helpline is a telephone and Web-based service. Quit coaches help callers  set up a plan for quitting, then call them once a week.

They suggest activities people can substitute for smoking, and point them to  resources they can use on their own so that the helpline is not the only  assistance they have to quit smoking.

Quit coaches encourage callers to stay with the program for at least 90  days.

They follow up with the callers at the seven-month and one-year marks to see  how they are doing.

Lee Connelly, supervisor of the smoking-cessation program at the county  Department of Public Health, encouraged those quitting smoking to check with  their insurance companies or workplace human-resource coordinators for special  insurance offers or options for non-smokers.

The county created financial  incentives in its benefit plans for employees and dependents who are  non-smokers. A health-plan requirement to take cheek swabs from employees to  verify if they smoked caused an outcry last year among some who said the process  was an invasion of privacy and would allow the county to collect sensitive  health information.

The county today is starting a new round of classes for employees who want to  quit smoking. Employees can attend the class once a week during their lunch hour  to learn about nicotine-replacement therapy and tips on managing withdrawal,  weight gain and stress.

Connelly said about a dozen participants show up at the classes. There is  room for more.

County employees who participate are each covered $500 a year for  prescription smoking-cessation medicines.

Justin Lauridsen, judicial clerk at the Pretrial Services Division of the  county’s Adult Probation Department, quit smoking through the county’s program  about a month ago after smoking at least a pack a day for seven years. He took  two weeks’ worth of smoking-cessation medicine, which the county paid for.

Lauridsen, 25, said it was jarring to learn of smokers his age having serious  health problems that later developed into near-fatal conditions.

He said it was helpful having a co-worker with whom to attend  smoking-cessation classes.

“It was so much information I didn’t know about smoking,” Lauridsen said.

Read more:  http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2011/12/30/20111230maricopa-county-program-smokers-get-help-quit.html#ixzz1iWGweQqY