Health

A Year Later, CVS Says Stopping Tobacco Sales Made a Big Difference

This March 25, 2014, file photo, shows a CVS store in Philadelphia. CVS Health will buy Omnicare in a deal valued at about $12.7 billion in move to expand its pharmacy services reach into assisted living and senior care facilities. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)
This March 25, 2014, file photo, shows a CVS store in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File)

(USA Today) – The decision to stop tobacco sales at all of its drugstores a year ago caused people to buy 95 million fewer packs of cigarettes in 13 states, CVS Health says in a new study out Thursday.

The new study compared total sales of tobacco products at all types of stores in the 13 states where CVS has more than 15% of market share with sales in states that don’t have any CVS stores.

The study, conducted by CVS’ Health Research Institute, evaluated cigarette pack purchases at drug, food, mass merchandise, dollar, convenience and gas station stores in the eight months after CVS stopped selling tobacco products. Over the same period, the average smoker in these states purchased five fewer cigarette packs. The 95 million fewer packs sold, CVS said, was a 1% decrease in the number of packs sold.

During 2014, nearly 264 billion cigarettes were sold in the United States, a decrease from approximately 273 billion sold in 2013, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

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