Smoking Cessation Trust Donates 4,000 Reusable Face Masks

NEW ORLEANS – According to the World Health Organization, smokers are likely to be more vulnerable to COVID-19 because they may already have lung disease or reduced lung capacity which would greatly increase risk of serious illness.

“If infected by COVID-19, smokers can significantly spread the virus in the community,” said Juan J. Gershanik, MD, president of the Orleans Parish Medical Society and medical director of West Jefferson Medical Center’s NICU. “That is why it is so important to wear a mask, which decreases the chances of the spread.”

The Smoking Cessation Trust strongly encourages Louisiana smokers to eliminate tobacco use in all its forms and do all that they can to prevent contracting or spreading the novel coronavirus. To do its part to help smokers during this challenging time, the Trust is also offering a total of 4,000 reusable face masks to cessation providers and community partners across the state. In addition to smoking cessation clinics and hospitals, organizations such as Second Harvest and Household of Faith, who are doing their part to provide food and social services to area communities, will also be receiving masks for distribution.

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“As we carefully navigate the phases of Louisiana’s coronavirus reopening, it is vitally important to protect ourselves and others by adhering to the state’s mask mandate and following the safety guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,” said Mike Rogers, CEO of the Smoking Cessation Trust Management Services. “To that end, it is our hope that not only smokers, but all Louisianans who are bravely facing this public health crisis, will wear these masks in an effort to protect their health and the health of their families, friends and neighbors.”

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