In 2003, HealthNet launched its Tobacco Cessation Program, designed to give one-on-one support for patients who want to quit smoking. The highly effective program follows the clinical practice guidelines established by the U.S. Dept. of Health & Human Services. More than 277 people successfully completed the program last year. Husband and wife, David and Kathy Hagan have both successfully completed our Tobacco Cessation Program and are both 3 years smoke free! Check out the story below about David’s journey to becoming Smoke Free!
Discuss how you started smoking. What age? What was the appeal? Did you think of possible consequences?
I had older brothers that got me involved around age 6-8. I started smoking casually around age 12 and was a heavy smoker by age 16 because I had older friends. My parents were deceased at that age and I just thought it was cool. It became a habit but I didn’t worry about anything back then.
Discuss your past attempts (if any) to quit smoking. Why do you think they weren’t successful?
I used candy and gum. I quit four times for a couple of years but stress easily got me started again. This time my age, health, and money made me want to quit.
What motivated you to quit for good? How long have you been smoke-free?
Money, health, children and grandkids. In October I will be 3 years smoke-free.
Discuss how Healthnet’s Quit Smoking Program helped in your journey to quit for good.
The motivating process. This program helped in various ways with all the counsel and support.
What has been most rewarding to you about quitting?
The money I’ve saved, the improvements to my health, and just feeling better overall!
HealthNet’s Smoking Cessation Program provides nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), which helps reduce patients’ withdrawal symptoms and cravings. Unfortunately, the cost can be a real barrier, particularly for patients without insurance. In the past, we’ve partnered with the Marion County Public Health Department to provide these patients with NRT at no cost to them. In 2013, we supplied these patients with 155 boxes of patches and 60 boxes of gum, totaling $3,500. This year, the Health Department was forced to end this support, due to funding cuts. We are currently looking for other community partners who might be able to assist with this $3,500 need.