Community pharmacies can help smokers quit, study finds

Kentucky Health News

Community pharmacies may play a key role in helping smokers quit, according to a study done in California and published in the peer-reviewed journal Pharmacy.

Kentucky’ adult smoking rate, 17.4%, is tied for fourth in the nation with MIssissippi. For a partial list of pharmacies that advertise their help with smoking cessation, go to

“Although two-thirds of people who smoke would like to quit, many individuals trying to quit on their own are not successful,” notes a news release from the University of California, Davis, where the study was done in cooperation with  other academic institutions across the country and the Community Pharmacy Enhanced Services Network, involving 22 California pharmacists and 26 pharmacy technicians who underwent tobacco cessation training.

“Pharmacists have shown to be effective in helping patients quit,” the release said. “They can reach uninsured and under-resourced patients as well as patients living in rural areas who might experience barriers to accessing primary care. However, the study showed certain barriers exist to making pharmacy cessation programs effective,” such as billing complexities, software limitations and training gaps for handling complicated patient cases.

“Compatibility with existing workflows, staff buy-in and the crucial role of pharmacy technicians significantly helped” pharmacy custiomers quit smoking, said the study’s senior author, Karen Hudmon of the Purdue University College of Pharmacy.

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