Governor takes action aimed at reducing Indiana’s smoking rate

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INDIANAPOLIS (WTHR) — Governor Eric Holcomb is pushing for more support aimed at Hoosiers trying to quit smoking.

On Monday, the Indiana State Department of Health and Indiana Family and Social Services Administration moved to help Hoosiers better afford cessation products.

Beginning August 1, Hoosiers will be able to purchase tobacco cessation products at Indiana pharmacies without having to get a prescription from a doctor.

Indiana becomes only the 12th state with a policy allowing pharmacists to prescribe tobacco cessation products.

“Studies show that women are more likely to quit smoking during pregnancy because they want to give their baby the best possible start in life," said State Health Commissioner Kris Box, M.D., FACOG. "Quitting tobacco will improve maternal health and send us farther down the path to achieving Governor Holcomb’s goal of being best in the Midwest in infant mortality by 2024.”

Women who smoke are at least twice as likely to have a preterm birth, which is the leading cause of infant mortality in Indiana.

Indiana has the 7th highest infant mortality rate in the nation and is 3rd in the U.S. for maternal mortality.