Johnson and Wales University is set to become Rhode Island’s first tobacco-free college campus by July 2016. The university will be the 30th campus in New England to make the move, according to the Tobacco Free College Campus Initiative.
Johnson and Wales already prohibits the sale and advertising of tobacco products on campus. Spokeswoman Lisa Pelosi said the university hopes to open conversation about the health risks of tobacco use.
Pharmacy corporation CVS Caremark has officially changed its name to CVS Health.
The Woonsocket-based company announced the name change as a way to reflect its growth beyond a retail pharmacy chain into a multi-service health care company. Today, the $127-billion dollar CVS Health encompasses 7700 retail pharmacies, hundreds of walk-in medical clinics, a pharmacy benefits manager and more. CVS Health president Helena Foulkes says it made sense to re-brand now.
Lifespan, one of Rhode Island's largest employers, is implementing a new policy that will make employees who use tobacco products pay a surcharge.
The policy will tack on an extra $600 a year to the medical benefits of any employee or spouse or domestic partner covered by company insurance who uses tobacco products. That includes cigarettes, chewing tobacco and e-cigarettes.
Lifespan will also offer employees free smoking cessation programs.
Lifespan’s CEO says it’s a way to encourage employees to quit.
Can we slack off on prevention efforts now? Not if we want to prevent the estimated 1,750 tobacco-related deaths every year, according to the Rhode Island Department of Health. And that doesn't take into account the number of years lives are shortened by exposure to second-hand smoke.