CHICAGO — The CVS Health Foundation is supporting a national smoking cessation program from Easter Seals as the charity marks World No Tobacco Day on May 31.
Easter Seals said Wednesday that the CVS Health Foundation is providing a $400,000 grant to help fund the program, which aims to help veterans, people with disabilities and caregivers live healthier, tobacco-free lives.
The cessation program highlights the American Lung Association’s Freedom From Smoking online program, which takes participants through modules containing tips and lessons on how to quit smoking. Easter Seals said the collaboration with the American Lung Association will help reach new audiences and empower the individuals they serve to quit smoking for good.
“As we mark World No-Tobacco Day, we are proud to partner with Easter Seals, America’s largest health charity, to launch this valuable program to help people quit smoking,” Eileen Howard Boone, president of the CVS Health Foundation, said in a statement. “Our company’s purpose is helping people on their path to better health, and through this program we are able to extend that purpose to veterans, people with disabilities and caregivers. We are pleased to bring together two best-in-class organizations like Easter Seals and the American Lung Association to support smoking cessation.”
The World Health Organization holds World No Tobacco Day annually on May 31 to raise awareness about the health risks associated with tobacco use and to advocate for policies to reduce tobacco consumption. CVS Health has taken action to curtail tobacco use by removing all tobacco products from its approximately 7,800 CVS/pharmacy stores as of September 2014 and launching a major smoking cessation program.
According to Easter Seals, research indicates that veterans and people with disabilities have a higher incidence of smoking, which remains the single, largest preventable cause of death and disease in the United States. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that male veterans ages 25 to 64 are more likely to smoke than nonveterans in the same age category, with 26% of veterans versus 22% of nonveterans being smokers. Twenty-three percent of people with disabilities are smokers, compared with 17% of adults without disabilities.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to enhance the services Easter Seals provides to more than 1.8 million people with disabilities, veterans, caregivers and their families each year with this smoking cessation program through our partnership with CVS Health and its foundation,” stated Easter Seals president and chiefexecutive officer Randy Rutta.