Essentia Health helps smokers kick the habit for good

While on the decline, about 36.5 million Americans still smoke cigarettes. In fact, tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the world. That’s why Essentia Health is making every effort to help tobacco users kick the habit for good.

Essentia offers face-to-face counseling appointments with a Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialists. Since beginning the program, 48-percent of people who have seen an Essentia tobacco treatment specialist three or more times and have used medications to help their quit process are not smoking six months later.

“Quitting is hard, but you can increase your chance of success with help,” said Jill Doberstein, who supervises Essentia’s tobacco cessation efforts. “Every time I have a loved one tell me ‘I’ve tried everything,’ I ask have you tried this?”

Face-to-face counseling is not only successful, it’s also a non-judgmental, convenient service that most people will find right in their own community. Essentia offers the program and counselors at 43 clinic and hospital locations in the areas it serves. In Northern Minnesota and Northwestern Wisconsin, there are 23 tobacco cessation specialists, 17 registered nurses, two respiratory therapists and four health care professionals ready to help smokers quit.

In the Twin Ports, the following Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialists are here to assist:

Superior Clinic: Sherry Doskey

Proctor Clinic: Diana Smith

West Duluth Clinic: Krysta Kaas

St. Mary’s Heart & Vascular Center: Kayla Wicklund and Krysta Kaas

Lakeside Clinic: Lisa Messerer

Lakewalk Clinic: Amy Coltvet-Watkins

Duluth Clinic- 1st Street – Cancer Center: Colleen Baggs

Duluth Clinic- 1st Street – Internal Medicine: Julie Adams

St. Mary’s Medical Center Inpatient: Deb Strange

“Quitting smoking has immediate and long-term benefits at any age. Quitting is hard, but you can increase your chances of success with help,” said Doberstein. “I’m proud we’re able to help people through counseling and medications to double or even triple their chances of success.”

Most insurance plans fully cover the counseling and medications for tobacco cessation and there are several programs for those who don’t have insurance, or need assistance with cost. For more information, call 1-844-403-7010 or your local clinic to start the process to a healthier you.

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