Gainesville, Ga. – The Georgia Healthy Family Alliance (GHFA), the philanthropic arm of the Georgia Academy of Family Physicians, today announced Northeast Georgia Health System (NGHS) as presenting sponsor of Tar Wars, a program developed by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) focused on educating students as early as 4th grade about the dangers of tobacco use and vaping.
In response to the epidemic of youth vaping and e-cigarette use, Georgia family physicians are partnering with the health system to present the Tar Wars program in Hall County Schools, Gainesville City Schools and surrounding counties.
From a community prevention effort, NGHS was eager to partner with GHFA. “This initiative aligns with our community health improvement plan in terms of preventing lung disease and is an educational effort targeted directly at the kids in our community. We felt very strongly about supporting this program,” says Christy Moore, Community Health Improvement Manager at NGHS.
According to the Georgia Student Health Survey administered by the Georgia Department of Education, the incidence of students who report having used a vape has increased over 100 percent in just the past two years in Hall County Schools.
“The trend is alarming and clearly dangerous for our community,” says Dr. Monica Newton, a family medicine physician at Northeast Georgia Physician’s Group and leader of the Northeast Georgia Strike Force effort. “Not only are we seeing more illness as a direct result of vaping, we don’t always know what is contained in the vape, which is scary. I am grateful to NGHS for taking the lead to educate our children about how dangerous vaping is.”
GHFA has set a goal of raising $250,000 so that students can have access to the program for multiple years starting in the 2020 school year.
The Alliance is the philanthropic arm of the Georgia Academy of Family Physicians (GAFP). Established in 1947, the GAFP is a member chapter of the American Academy of Family Physicians. GAFP strives to promote the health of the citizens of Georgia by advancing the specialty of Family Medicine through education, advocacy and service to family physicians in the State of Georgia. Boasting a membership of 3,200 family physicians, family medicine residents, and medical students, the organization supports those who aspire to achieve excellence and who are committed to delivering it. For more information about Tar Wars, visit www.georgiahealthyfamilyalliance.org or call us at 404-321-7445.