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NEW INITIATIVE: Tobacco Free Florida's New Weight Management Program

By Florida Department of Health, Office of Communications

September 30, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 30, 2013

Contact: Communications Office
(850) 245-4111
or Victoria Martinez
media@tobaccofreeflorida.com
(305) 396-0006

TOBACCO FREE FLORIDA'S NEW WEIGHT MANAGEMENT PROGRAM CAN ASSIST WITH WEIGHT LOSS WHILE QUITTING
~ State is Also Offering New Combination Nicotine Replacement Therapy ~

TALLAHASSEE—Do you want to quit tobacco but you’re concerned about weight gain? The Florida Department of Health’s Tobacco Free Florida program’s new expanded resources can help.

As of Sept. 25, participants who enroll in the Florida Quitline phone counseling may access the Weight Management Program, a pilot program designed to help tobacco users quit while limiting possible weight gain associated with quitting.

Those enrolled will receive up to three tobacco cessation calls in addition to up to three weight management coaching calls. Participants with type 2 diabetes will receive up to three calls with registered dietitians trained in the weight loss needs of individuals with type 2 diabetes.

The Weight Management Program is available to Florida Quitline participants, age 18 and older, who speak English, currently use tobacco, and have a body mass index (BMI) of 23 or higher. Participants cannot be pregnant, diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, or have had weight loss surgery in the past 12 months.

Tobacco Free Florida has also expanded its free nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) offering. Any participant who smokes more than nine cigarettes per day or chews more than two tins per week is eligible for combination NRT, including a supply of both nicotine patches and gum, free of charge.

This offering comes after a change in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence guidelines. For individuals who use tobacco at these levels, the guidelines indicate this combination of medications “may result in greater suppression of tobacco withdrawal symptoms than does the use of a single medication.”

Florida residents who want to quit tobacco and qualify for the Weight Management Program and/or combination NRT can take advantage by calling 1-877-U-CAN-NOW. Both programs are free and give participants access to a trained Quit Coach who will provide support by:

  • Preparing participants for their quit date
  • Helping develop an individualized Quit Plan, including a plan for weight management if applicable
  • Offering advice and information on medications that may help with withdrawal symptoms

ABOUT TOBACCO FREE FLORIDA
DOH’s Tobacco Free Florida campaign is a statewide cessation and prevention campaign funded by Florida’s tobacco settlement fund.

Tobacco users interested in quitting are encouraged to use one of the state’s three ways to quit. To learn about Tobacco Free Florida and the state’s free quit resources, visit Tobacco Free Florida or follow the campaign on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TobaccoFreeFlorida or Twitter at www.twitter.com/tobaccofreefla.

DOH works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

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