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February 18, 2009
By Anne McMillin
The Nevada Indoor Clean Air act went into effect in 2006 prohibiting smoking in public places with the intent of helping protect children and adults from second hand smoke exposure. Recent federal legislation will significantly increase taxes on a pack of cigarettes beginning in April. While the tide of public opinion is moving toward a decline in tobacco use, it remains an addiction to the drug nicotine with serious health consequences.
The Nevada Tobacco Users’ Helpline (1-800-QUIT NOW or 1-800-784-8669) is a free resource for state residents struggling with tobacco addiction. The helpline provides free counseling sessions and treatment services (if needed) to any Nevada resident 18 years or older who wants to quit their tobacco use.
Credentialed alcohol and drug counselors provide free confidential and integrative nicotine dependence treatment and counseling services, delivered over the telephone to assist individuals in stopping all forms of tobacco use (smoked and smokeless). A medication assistance program is also available for qualified callers as funding allows. The helpline provides 24-hour voicemail options to receive free brochures and/or services.
The Nevada Tobacco Users’ Helpline was originally founded by Elizabeth Fildes Ed.D., in 1997 and operates under the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Nevada School of Medicine. Funded by grant dollars from the Fund for Health Nevada and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the helpline is staffed weekdays from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.