Seton gets grant for smoking-cessation center
The state Department of Health has awarded Seton Health a $600,000 grant to create a smoking cessation center based at St. Mary's Hospital in Troy.
The grant, to be used over three years, is part of $2.4 million that the state is giving to 14 organizations around New York for their anti-smoking programs.
Since 1999, Seton had been offering successful regular cessation programs in the area, said Seton's Director of Education Susan Malinowski. Now, with the center, Seton will be that much more effective, she said.
"Our success rate has been approximately 14 percent higher than the national average," Malinowski said. "This grant will allow Seton Health to expand its smoking cessation program and help more smokers kick this deadly habit," she said.
While Seton's center will generally serve an estimated 157,000 smokers in Albany, Rensselaer, Schenectady and Saratoga counties, it will focus on the Capital Region's 34,500 smokers who are low-income or Medicaid recipients. For those individuals, Seton's programs will be free.
Seton hopes to recruit a minimum of 1,500 smokers for on-going programs, 1,000 for group cessation programs, and another 500 for counseling, Malinsowki said, stressing Seton will continue its four-county outreach effort.
The center will work closely with area health care providers by offering intervention education, continuing medical education credit, and a referral service to the center.
Seton has also received a $17,000 grant from the Albany County Health Department to operate a nicotine replacement therapy program. This initiative will provide a two-week supply of nicotine patches to qualified residents of Albany County who are enrolled in Seton's group program.
The Rensselaer County Health Department and Capital District Tobacco-Free Coalition has also provided funds to Seton to operate similar nicotine replacement services in Rensselaer and Saratoga counties.
Seton Health is a system headquartered at St. Mary's and provides health care services from more than 20 sites in Albany, Rensselaer and Saratoga counties.