The Oklahoma Hospital Association (OHA) announced recognition of Duncan Regional Hospital (DRH) amongst other health facilities for their efforts in reducing tobacco use.

Through an initiative of OHA and a program of Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) called

Hospitals Helping Patients Quit (HHPQ), DRH and eight other hospitals or clinics have achieved “notable benchmarks” when it comes to reduction of tobacco use in Oklahoma and the health providers communities.

According to OHA, DRH and other health care providers recognized “have made a critical commitment to their patients, employees, and communities to reduce Oklahoma’s leading cause of preventable death, tobacco use and related illness.”

“The visionary hospitals and clinics recognized have implemented a permanent and standard best-practice protocol for identifying, counseling and referring individuals to the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline (OTH) for coaching support and nicotine replacement therapy,” states a release from OHA.

Duncan Regional totaled 700 of these helpline referrals. In total, these organizations with HHPQ have referred 36,000 patients to the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline “resulting in an estimated 25,300 years of life saved and millions of dollars in reduced health care costs as well as personal spending on tobacco products.”

For more information on the program and it’s initiative, visit www.okoha.com/hhpq. For more information on the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline, see okhelpline.com.