VANCOUVER – Nicotine replacement therapies will be available to all British Columbian smokers at no cost and smoking cessation prescription drugs will be covered under PharmaCare, Premier Christy Clark announced today.

“Every year tobacco-related deaths rob us needlessly of friends, family and loved ones,” said Premier Christy Clark. “Tobacco is the largest single cause of premature death and disease in our province and while a lot of progress has been made, there is still more we can do. This program will provide smokers with a new level of direct support to quit, to live smoke-free, and to improve their own health as well as the health of their families.”

Starting Sept. 30, 2011, British Columbians will have the choice of either nicotine gum or patches to help quit tobacco with a free supply for up to 12 weeks, or obtaining coverage of prescribed smoking cessation drugs through PharmaCare. The program will cost an estimated $15 million to $25 million, based on the number of individuals who use the program.

 

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