While Delaware is ranked as the third most quit-friendly state for smokers in the American Lung Association's "Helping Smokers Quit: Tobacco Cessation Coverage 2011" report, a couple of its neighbors rank toward the bottom.

According to the ALA, there is an uneven patchwork of quit-smoking cigarettes treatments and services made available nationwide. Among the states that are the least quit-friendly for smokers is Maryland, ranked tied for 42nd out of 45 states ranked.

States were ranked based on cessation coverage in Medicaid plans and state employee health plan coverage, cost per smoker for state-run quit lines and standards for private insurance coverage.

Delaware's Medicaid program recently expanded coverage for cheap cigarettes cessation counseling to all enrollees, making its cigarettes online cessation benefit completely comprehensive. The state also provides cigarettes cessation treatments to its state employees and their family members.

In Delaware, the adult smoking cigarettes rate is 18.3 percent, compared to the national rate of 20.6 percent. Annual health care costs directly caused by smoking cigarettes in the state is $284 million. The tobacco industry spends $106.7 million on marketing expenditures in Delaware.

Additionally, the Delaware quit line is funded at a rate of $7.33 per smoker, which is below the national minimum standard of $10.53 that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends to reach an adequate number of smokers in every state.

Dr. Karyl Rattay, director of the Delaware Division of Public Health, said tobacco prevention and cessation are priorities for the state, and she is grateful the state has public officials and a Delaware Health Fund Advisory Committee that understand how important these issues are, as tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death in the state, as well as the nation.

"Because of the commitments of these individuals and groups, we've been able to fund the important initiatives we have for tobacco prevention and cessation," she said. "We have seen a decrease in smoking cigarettes and tobacco use in the state. We've made progress, but we still have a ways to go."

For those in Delaware who want to quit smoking cigarettes but need help, they can call 211 to access the quit line, where they can develop a plan with someone on how to quit and get medication to help them do so.

Meanwhile, in Maryland, the state is ranked the third least quit-friendly state for smokers according to the ALA because there are too many smokers in Maryland who are not able to get the help they need to quit smoking cigarettes.

The state government does not offer tobacco cessation benefits to state employees, and the state's quit line is funded at $1.20 per smoker for fiscal year 2012. Some low-income Medicaid enrollees in Maryland do have access to tobacco cessation treatment, but it is not guaranteed for all Medicaid enrollees.

"There is absolutely no excuse for these states' tragic failure to help its smokers quit," said Dennis Alexander, regional executive director of the American Lung Association in Maryland.

Todays tip: about Donskoy Tabak.