Regional health councils could receive $1 million in three years for smoking prevention

10:17 am | August 15, 2013

Close to $1 million may be coming to Northeast Tennessee over the next three years to help anti-smoking campaigns, Photo by Brandon Hicksthanks to a new direction of use from Tobacco Settlement funds.

Director of the Carter and Johnson County Health Departments Caroline Hurt told the Carter County Health Council Wednesday the settlement funds would once again be used in communities for smoking prevention education.

Each year for three years, the region’s health departments will receive a little over $300,000 to be used for smoking prevention. In the past, the settlement funds were used for statewide initiatives, such as the push that removed smoking from restaurants and other public areas.

“It looks like the regional health councils will play a large role in the disbursement of these funds,” Hurt said.

The settlement money would likely be used to cover the costs of education to stop smoking in pregnant women, to reduce the exposure of children to second- and third-hand smoke and to stop minors from picking up the habit in the first place.

“This is true public health,” Hurt said.

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