Article Text

  1. J. Van Winkle
  1. University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA


Purpose of Study Miles City, MT has a very high rate of tobacco use and, subsequently, there is a high rate of tobacco use-related illnesses in the community. Custer County, the county in which Miles City is located, is one of only two counties in Montana that does not receive federal or state grant money to fund tobacco cessation. A community medicine project was designed to identify resources for tobacco cessation to both physicians and community members.

Methods Used Local health care providers were contacted to inquire about their knowledge of tobacco cessation resources currently available to members of the community. A further search for resources was done on the World Wide Web. Additionally, a literature search was conducted using PubMed to determine the most effective tobacco cessation interventions.

Summary of Results After community tobacco cessation resources were inventoried, two different brochures were produced highlighting the resources most applicable for Miles City residents. One brochure targeted health care providers and included recently added Medicare codes for tobacco cessation and counseling. The second brochure targeted the general public. Both brochures included previously unknown resources for free nicotine replacement therapy, information about insurance coverage, free resources, and how to quit for life. Both of these brochures were distributed to the health care providers. An article was written in the local newspaper about tobacco cessation in the community. A letter to the editor was included in the same issue listing the tobacco cessation resources available to the community members.

Conclusions Reached Efforts to increase tobacco cessation can be aided by an evaluation and enumeration of local, state, and national resources. Cooperation with local health care providers and communication with local media sources can be useful ways to disseminate health improvement information to community members and to encourage healthy lifestyle changes.

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