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Historically individuals with mental health or substance use disorders have been targeted by the tobacco industry and have had limited access to tobacco treatment and other proven tobacco reduction strategies, resulting in deep-rooted tobacco disparities. The
Change for Life initiative aims to change this narrative.
Research shows that integrating tobacco-use treatment into behavioral health programs can boost chances of long-term recovery and improve mental health while dramatically reducing health risks and chronic disease. Tobacco-free campuses are also healthier for employees and visitors.
Change for Life: Tobacco-Free Recovery empowers behavioral health organizations to:
Helping patients quit and remain abstinent from smoking can result in a 25% increased likelihood of sustained recovery from the use of alcohol and other drugs. -- Prochaska et al, 2004
Mary Ward, President, McLeod Addictive Disease Center
Most North Carolina Medicaid beneficiaries and service providers will be able to breathe easy soon, knowing that when they seek care or go to work, the air will be free from secondhand smoke.
Beginning April 1, 2023, North Carolina Standard and Tailored Prepaid Health Plans serving Medicaid and uninsured patients will require contracted medical, behavioral health, and some intellectual/developmental disabilities (IDD)/traumatic brain injury (TBI) organizations to provide a 100% tobacco-free campus.
Click here for the NC Medicaid Bulletin announcing this Tobacco-Free requirement.
Breathe Easy NC: Becoming Tobacco Free is the statewide initiative created to support this policy change. Service providers can visit BreatheEasyNC.org for the resources and information providers will need to take campuses tobacco-free and integrate tobacco use treatment into their services.
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