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August 27, 2014

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Southern Nevada Health District praises CVS for cutting tobacco

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Gene J. Puskar / AP

In this Wednesday, July 17, 2013, file photo, Marlboro cigarettes are on display in a CVS store in Pittsburgh. The nation’s second-largest drugstore chain says it will phase out cigarettes, cigars and chewing tobacco by Oct. 1 as it continues to focus more on health care. The move will cost the Woonsocket, R.I., company about $2 billion in annual revenue.

Southern Nevada health officials are applauding the CVS Caremark company for phasing tobacco products out of its stores.

The Southern Nevada Health District issued a statement Thursday saying tobacco use results in more than half a billion dollars in health care costs each year in Nevada alone.

The chain announced its decision Wednesday, saying that selling cigarettes was incompatible with its shift toward providing more health care to its customers. The company has been adding more in-store health clinics.

The decision is expected to cost CVS about $2 billion in annual revenue. CVS brought in more than $123 billion in revenue in 2012.

Dr. Joe Iser of the Las Vegas-based health district says the company is showing tremendous leadership by cutting the products from its inventory.

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