CHESTERFIELD (WRIC) - CVS is saying they'll no longer sell tobacco products in its 7,000 pharmacies nationwide.
The president of CVS says they thought long and hard about losing that money, but in the end, improving people's health is their main mission.
Craig Patel, a pharmacist and the owner of the Buford Road pharmacy, says CVS is taking a step in the right direction. People come to the drug store for medicine and medical advice.
"They come here and get medicine, so if you sell the same product that harms them, it doesn't really make sense for being a pharmacist," he says.
Patel says his pharmacy has opted not to sell harmful products for that very reason. He hopes that having a big name like CVS making this move will put pressure on others to follow.
"It's definitely going to encourage other chain stores as well who are selling tobacco and hopefully looking at CVS and other pharmacies," he says. "They are not encouraging all these products. They might cut down as well. Hopefully that way the customer will understand the value of not having nicotine in their body."
And people seem to agree that thinking a place that promotes a health and wellness is not the place to get buy something that is known to be so damaging to your body.
"I think people need all the encouragement they can not to start to smart smoking," says Betsy Maccord.
"I think it's probably in their best interest not to sell tobacco based on the fact that they're trying to sell drugs and pharmaceuticals to support good health," says Vince Jacob. "So it seems like a conflict of interest to some degree."
Several other local pharmacies 8News reached out to say they also have no cigarette policy.
Meanwhile, the White House is supporting the move and says it will help reduce tobacco related deaths and bring down health care costs.
All 7,600 CVS locations will be phasing out tobacco products by the end of this year.
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