UVA Health, Community Pharmacies Partner to Help Appalachia Residents Quit Smoking

Fourteen independent community pharmacies will team with UVA Health to help residents of rural Appalachia quit smoking and test the effectiveness of multiple smoking cessation programs, including one based on text messaging. The project ultimately aims to lower the region’s cancer rates, which are among the highest in the country.

Backed by more than $5 million in funding from the National Cancer Institute, 14 pharmacies selected for the program in Virginia, Kentucky, North Carolina, West Virginia and Tennessee will participate in the study.

“It is clear that publicly available smoking cessation resources are not reaching residents in this region,” said Melissa Little, PhD, MPH, a researcher in the UVA School of Medicine’s Department of Public Health Sciences and the leader of this initiative. “We are hoping that by working with local community pharmacies, we’ll be able to help more smokers interested in quitting who otherwise may not have sought help with their quit attempt.” Read more >