The smoking rate in Florida has decreased significantly in the past decade, but not all populations in our communities have seen the same success. During the 10th annual Tobacco Free Florida Week, April 2-8, the TFF program of the Florida Department of Health will launch a new initiative in hopes of reaching these individuals with the theme Achieving Health Equity.
The burden of tobacco is disproportionally affecting many of the more than 2.5 million Florida adults who are current smokers. These include those with lower incomes, the LGBT community, ethnic and racial minorities, and those with mental health issues. By promoting “innovative solutions to achieve health equity across Florida,” the program hopes to counter the culture of smoking and secondhand smoke as a normal way of life.
The Florida Department of Health’s Tobacco Free Florida campaign began in 2007 with funding from Florida’s tobacco settlement fund. During the past 10 years it has offered free tools and services to more than 188,000 residents who have quit tobacco. The number of adult smokers in Florida has dropped by 451,000 during the past 10 years and the state has saved $17.7 billion in health care costs.
If you would like more information on Tobacco Free Florida’s Quit Your Way services, click the highlighted link.