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Posted: November 22, 2013 8:26 a.m.

Ga. health officials offering help to quit smoking

ATLANTA (AP) — State health officials are offering help to Georgians who want to quit smoking and using tobacco products.

The Georgia Department of Public Health is using grant money from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to offer a four-week supply of free nicotine replacement therapy. The medication comes in the form of patches and gum and is available to Georgia tobacco users aged 18 and older while supplies last.

The department says smoking costs Georgians $1.8 billion in direct health care costs each year and $3.2 billion in lost productivity. Jean O'Connor, director of the health department's health promotion and disease prevention section, says tobacco use is the top preventable cause of death in Georgia.

Those interested in quitting can call the Georgia Tobacco Quit Line for the free treatment.

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