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Ore. curbs smoking among substance abusers

Dec. 26, 2011 at 3:20 PM

SALEM, Ore., Dec. 26 (UPI) -- The state of Oregon is fighting tobacco use among people with mental illness and substance abuse disorders, officials say.

Linda Drach of the Oregon Public Health Division said the prevalence of tobacco use among people with mental illness and substance use disorders is well documented, but few policies exist in the United States that address this problem.

In Oregon, three statewide policy changes were enacted at community-based residential mental health and addiction treatment facilities including:

-- Requiring 100 percent smoke-free campuses.

-- Prohibiting staff from distributing tobacco products to residents.

-- Mandating integration of smoking cessation into discharge planning.

"States can play a key role in ensuring that widespread policies addressing these tobacco-related disparities among people with mental health and substance addictions are adopted, implemented and enforced, Drach said in a statement.

The initiative details are scheduled to be published in the January edition of the journal Preventing Chronic Diseases.

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