...united in their collaboration to improve the health of Newaygo County residents.
Tobacco use is the single most preventable cause of disease, disability and death in the Unites States and is a major risk factor for many chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, stroke, high blood pressure, and diabetes. In Newaygo County 26% of adults report smoking cigarettes regularly as compared to 21% in the State of Michigan. Among youth, 8.2% of 9th and 11th graders report smoking cigarettes in the past 30 days. The rate of women who smoke while pregnant is 25.5%, significantly higher than the State rate of 18.3%.
The BreatheWell Newaygo County project staff and partners will work with school age youth to develop and implement community educational and awareness campaigns for Kick Butts Day and the Great American Smoke-out to highlight the dangers of tobacco use and exposure to secondhand smoke and promote positive messages about creating tobacco-free lifestyles. The project will also provide services to help people who want to quit tobacco use through Spectrum Health Gerber’s Tobacco Treatment Specialist program. To reach women of childbearing years, project staff plan to partner with the Newaygo County Great Start Collaborative to promote tobacco quit services and smoke-free homes.
“We are very grateful for this funding and to have the opportunity to provide a tobacco prevention program that will reach youth, adults, and families with young children. We are hopeful that this project will make an impact on changing attitudes and behaviors around tobacco use,” stated Donna Norkoli, Health Planner at District Health Department #10.
“Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial is excited for the opportunity to share our resources with our community partners to reduce tobacco use, and this grant can help us amplify our efforts,” said Josh Gustafson, director of Gerber Memorial’s community health services, which features numerous free tobacco cessation programs designed to help people quit smoking and other tobacco use. “This generous grant can help more people stop using tobacco and improve their health and the health of our community.”
For more information on tobacco prevention and for help with quitting in Newaygo County visit www.livewell4health.org
UnitedHealthcare is dedicated to helping people nationwide live healthier lives. For more information, visit UnitedHealthcare atwww.uhc.com.