June 26, 2018
Panama City, Fla. – Tobacco-free worksite initiatives are quickly becoming a popular tool for better employee health and worksite safety. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 70% of current tobacco users want to quit. Tobacco free grounds polices nearly double an employee’s chances of success.
An addition to being a positive for employees who are trying to quit, tobacco-free policies are also a plus for business profits. Each year, cigarette smoke costs the United States more than $298 billion in workplace productivity.i For an employer, providing insurance for a smoker costs about $2,000 more annually versus their non-smoking employees.ii
Area worksites such as Bay District Schools, Gulf Coast State College, Bay Medical Sacred Heart, and Gulf Coast Medical Center are 100% tobacco free. Many other organizations, like Life Management Center, are in the process of following suit. The Bay County Tobacco Prevention Program and the Bay County Tobacco Free Partnership are proud to provide ongoing support and resources.
If your organization or worksite is interested in going tobacco-free, please contact Krista Cogburn Peebles at 850-252-9600 or Krista.Cogburn-Peebles@flhealth.gov. To join the Bay County Tobacco Partnership, contact Heather Kretzer at 850-252-9670 or Heather.Kretzer@flhealth.gov. Meetings are the 5th Tuesday of each quarter from 3 – 5 pm at DOH-Bay’s auditorium located at 597 W 11th Street, Panama City, FL 32401.
About the Florida Department of Health
The department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.
About Tobacco Free Florida
The department's Tobacco Free Florida campaign is a statewide cessation and prevention campaign funded by Florida's tobacco settlement fund. Since the program began in 2007, more than 188,000 Floridians have successfully quit using one of Tobacco Free Florida's free tools and services. There are now approximately 451,000 fewer adult smokers in Florida than there was 10 years ago, and the state has saved $17.7 billion in health care costs.[xii] To learn more about Tobacco Free Florida's Quit Your Way services, visit www.tobaccofreeflorida.com or follow the campaign on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TobaccoFreeFlorida or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/tobaccofreefla.
[i] Potential Costs and Benefits of Smoking Cessation: An Overview of the Approach to State Specific Analysis.” Rumberger, J; Hollenbeak, C; Kline, D. Penn State, 2010. < https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=2&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiosN3QxcfTAhVi1oMKHaSTAo0QFggsMAE&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.lung.org%2Fassets%2Fdocuments%2Ftobacco%2Feconomic-benefits.pdf&usg=AFQjCNHAJAMm62_KggQSn0Z-ozNp9bE-UA&sig2=_–QAwq9jArx-PONcI-8aw>.
[ii] Berman M.; Crane, R.; Seiber, E.;Munur, M. “Estimating the Cost of a Smoking Employee.” Tobacco Control. June 2013. http://ucanr.edu/sites/tobaccofree/files/175136.pdf.