B.C. makes quitting smoking easier

Participants can register at a pharmacy, and receive 12 weeks worth of nicotine inhalers or lozenges as well as patches or gum

B.C. smokers can get free nicotine replacement products for 12 weeks

The B.C. government’s quit-smoking assistance program is now available to people who drop by a pharmacy to qualify for free nicotine replacement products.

As of Jan. 1, 2016, participants no longer have to register by calling 8-1-1 to reach the HealthLinkBC medical advice service. The program has also expanded its offerings to include nicotine inhalers and lozenges as well as gum and patches.

Health Minister Terry Lake said the changes are to make it easier for smokers to quit, or to try again if they have relapsed after using the program before. It supplies 12 weeks’ worth of nicotine replacement products in each calendar year to B.C. residents.

To qualify, people must have active Medical Services Plan coverage and be a tobacco smoker or chewer.

The program began in 2011 and the province has spent $38 million on it so far. A survey of 3,000 users in 2015 found that about one in four reported quitting smoking for some period, with half of those making it a month or more smoke free. Three quarters of survey participants reported smoking less after using nicotine replacement.

The program also covers 12 weeks of prescription drugs Zyban or Champix, with cost depending on coverage under the Pharmacare program. Details are available here or from your doctor.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Claremont Spartans win the inaugural Senior Girls’ AAAA Basketball Island Championship

Claremont Spartans win their Feb. 15 game agains the Royal Bay Ravens 71 - 64

Campus View Elementary undergoes $4.2 million in seismic upgrades

Campus View Elementary undergoes significant seismic upgrades

Sidney company tastes sweet success with sugar kelp

Cascadia Seaweed is experiencing rapid growth after launching six months ago

North Saanich floats tougher policies for buoys and moorings near Tsehum Harbour

Municipality also considers additional collaboration with Sidney and other communities

Westin Bear Mountain invests $2 million to renovate newly-named spa

‘Amatista Spa’ has yet to announce official opening date

VIDEO: Minister reports ‘modest progress’ after blockade talks with First Nation

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs say Coastal GasLink does not have authority to go through their lands

Henrique scores 2 as Ducks soar past Canucks 5-1

Vancouver tumbles out of top spot in Pacific Division

Trudeau cancels Caribbean trip amid pipeline protests across Canada

Protests against Coastal GasLink have disrupted rail service

B.C. VIEWS: Inaction on pipeline protests not a viable response

Columnist Frank Bucholtz on how the Coastal GasLink pipeline dispute got so bad

PHOTOS: Top 10 memories of the 2010 Olympics

Black Press Media’s Jenna Hauck, shares some of her most memorable images of 2010 Winter Games

#FoxForFiver: Support grows in B.C. to put Terry Fox on new $5 bill

Terry Fox’ Marathon of Hope raised money for cancer research

Trudeau confers with cabinet ministers as rail blockades continue

The Trudeau government has been criticized for not doing more to end the blockades

Canadian nurses’ unions warn national standards for coronavirus protection too low

President says safety protocols nationwide are inadequate compared to those in Ontario and other countries

Most Read