Promoting Adult/Adolescent Tobacco Cessation and Health (“PATCH”) Program

Editor’s Note: The safety tip for the month of December is provided by Mifflin County Communities That Care (CTC). This is an ongoing monthly series provided by CTC to help inform the public about key areas of health and or safety concerns. This month’s article was written by Kim S. Witovsky, OT/L, with the Huntingdon, Mifflin and Juniata PATCH Program.

The HMJ (Huntingdon, Mifflin and Juniata Counties) PATCH (Promoting Adult/Adolescent Tobacco Cessation and Health) Program is a valuable resource to assist both adults and teens in their efforts to quit tobacco and make positive health changes in their lives!

The PATCH program has successfully served our community for the past six years with grant monies from the PA Dept. of Health. As of October 1, 2009, PATCH no longer receives state funding due to the PA state budget cuts in the area of tobacco. However, PATCH will continue to offer the following quality tobacco cessation services.

The HMJ PATCH Program is:

  • A 10-week program that combines educational materials, behavioral counseling and nicotine patches/gum to assist and support individuals in their effort to quit using tobacco.
  • Available to adult and adolescent residents of Huntingdon, Mifflin and Juniata Counties, with weekly meetings in Huntingdon and Lewistown.
  • A Workplace Health and Wellness Program available to any place of employment that has at least 5 employees interested in quitting tobacco. Services will be provided on-site at the convenience of the employee or employer.
  • Open to anyone who uses tobacco. Services are available in one-on-one and group sessions for $15 per appointment for the general public. If you have Medical Assistance (MA), you will pay only an initial $15 registration fee and additional services/products are provided at no charge. CART/CARS may be used by MA recipients for transportation to appointments. Additional phone and e-mail support to quit tobacco is provided if the individual needs and asks for this extra help.
  • A comprehensive and holistic approach to tobacco cessation which uses the major components of Health/ Wellness Education and Care Management and focuses on positive reinforcement, encouragement and follow-up contacts after the person has completed the program.
  • Guided by the requirement of a written consent from the primary medical provider of each participant and facilitates ongoing communication between the program and the healthcare provider as well as with the participant and his/ her support systems.

The PATCH Program is an independently operated program through Integrated Behavioral Healthcare Management Services, Inc. in collaboration with Family Health Council of Central PA.

For additional information and materials or to refer someone to the program, please contact Kim Witkovsky, OT/L Tobacco Cessation Counselor at 866-377-1234 or at hmjquittoday@hotmail.com.