Increasing Coverage of Tobacco Cessation by Insurance Companies

Almost half of Missouri smokers have tried to quit at least once. Studies show that takes approximately seven attempts to quit before they are successful. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "Smokers who quit smoking before the age of 50 cut their risk of dying by half in the next 15 years. Costs savings from a smoking cessation interventions would more than pay than pay for those interventions within 3 to 4 years. Smoking cessation is more cost-effective than more commonly provided clinical preventative services, including mammography, colon cancer screening, PAP tests, treatment of moderate to mild hypertension, and treatment of high cholesterol."

The Agency for Health Care Policy Research (AHCPR) Smoking Cessation Clinical Guideline includes:

  • Covering treatment for tobacco use under both public and private insurance.
  • Eliminating cost barriers to treatment for underserved populations, particularly the uninsured.

The Missouri Partnership on Smoking or Health is working with insurance companies to ensure that tobacco cessation classes and products are covered, by showing the cost benefits. By improving the health of individuals and reducing tobacco use, we will improve the health of Missouri.

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Missouri Partnership on Smoking or Health, 420 E. State Street, Suite A, Jefferson City, MO 65101