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Photo via Wikimedia Commons
Photo via Wikimedia Commons
CVS stores nationwide will stop selling all tobacco products by Oct. 1.

CVS customers will soon need to turn to another drugstore chain for their supply of cigarettes.

The company announced Wednesday it will stop selling tobacco products at all of its CVS/pharmacy locations by Oct. 1.

“Ending the sale of cigarettes and tobacco products at CVS/pharmacy is the right thing for us to do for our customers and our company to help people on their path to better health,” said Larry J. Merlo, president and CEO of CVS Caremark.”Put simply, the sale of tobacco products is inconsistent with our purpose.”

CVS is the first major national pharmacy chain to remove tobacco products from its shelves.

The company estimates that it will lose approximately $2 billion in revenues annually because of the move.

“This decision more closely aligns the company with its patients, clients and health care providers to improve health outcomes while controlling costs and positions the company for continued growth,”  CVS said.

It will also launch a national smoking cessation program this spring, which will include information and treatment on smoking cessation at CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic along with online resources, CVS said. It will additionally offer comprehensive programs for CVS Caremark pharmacy benefit management plan members to help them to quit smoking.

 

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