Identifying and Responding to Technical Assistance and Training Needs in Tobacco Prevention and Control

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The Master Settlement Agreement generated expecta-tions that significant, long-term funding would be avail-able to the 46 participating states in reparation for the health costs incurred by tobacco use. Facing intense pressure to use anticipated funds for effective program-ming, states and national organizations considered how to supply the technical assistance and training at the state and local levels. This article reviews assessments by the American Legacy Foundation, the Tobacco Tech-nical Assistance Consortium, and selected states of the current needs for support, technical assistance, and training in tobacco prevention and control. Key findings indicated the need for information, information exchange, mentoring, and training targeted to new staff, with advanced skill sets for experienced staff. As future funding is uncertain, all these organizations are explor-ing innovative ways to maintain infrastructure and pro-gramming at the state and local levels. Training and technical assistance can be the solution to sustaining impetus in the movement.

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