CVS is kicking the habit. The national drugstore chain announced Wednesday that it will stop selling tobacco products by October 1, 2014. News With A Twist reporter Deepak Saini has more on a trend that’s sweeping the nation.
CVS is breaking the habit, making history, by being the first national pharmacy chain to stop selling tobacco products.
“I think CVS standing up and being a leader and not having tobacco products in their stores is sending a message to the entire country,” says Ochsner CEO Warner Thomas.
Ochsner took a similar stand a few years ago when the healthcare system made all of its hospitals tobacco free. Sure, some employees who didn’t want to kick the habit probably quit, but for the most part…
“Generally a lot of people were very positive. If you think about it, a high majority of our employees were non-smokers and they were happy, they applauded the move,” says Thomas.
Also applauding the move, but for a different reason, is a convenience store right across the street from this CVS.
“Being across the street from them, I’m not going to complain. We’ll just get all their business, so it’s fine with us,” says Magnolia Discount Manager Joseph Sulieman.
CVS says it wants to support the health and well-being of its customers, so it’s willing to take a hit in revenue; nearly $2 Billion down the toilet every year.
“If they’re trying to be healthy they should use that rule across the board and stop selling beer and liquor too,” says Sulieman.
Good point, but the Centers for Disease Control says tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death. Cigarette smoke is responsible for nearly 460,000 deaths a year.
“I think you’re going to see other organizations take the same approach to not selling tobacco products. I don’t think this is the finish. I think this is really just the start,” says Thomas.
Just like that, CVS is kicking cigarettes to the curb.