Smokers disappointed in CVS decision to drop tobacco products - KCTV5

Smokers disappointed in CVS decision to drop tobacco products

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KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

Smokers said Thursday that they are disappointed in CVS's decision to stop selling tobacco products in its stores.

CVS becomes the first national pharmacy chain to stop selling tobacco products, saying they conflict with their mission to help improve people's health by offering small medical clinics inside stores.

Kevin Alexander said smoking is a hard habit to break. He said he often bought cigarettes from the chain.

"CVS has great prices on their tobacco," he said. "Being a smoker, save a dollar here, a dollar there, it helps out."

He said he is surprised by the decision, and now will look for a new business to buy cigarettes from.

Troy Brennan, CVS Caremark chief medical officer, explained the company's decision to have all the products off the shelves by Oct. 1.

"We are trying to help doctors make sure patients take their medications for diseases like diabetes and hypertension and heart disease," Brennan said. "We are encouraging them to take those medications and telling doctors when we think there are gaps in care. We are part of the overall healthcare team. It's really antithetical as a result to have a product in our store, tobacco, which actually causes these diseases."

Wade Taylor said people like him will still smoke. He said he has been smoking for 30 years, but understands the rationale from CVS. He said there are fewer people smoking, and while it will be inconvenient that there are still convenience stores to buy from.

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