Monday, October 1, 2012

Smoking Cessation Quitlines- Use Them!

Source: VDH.gov
Those who know me are well aware of my anti-smoking stance. I am always a bit perplexed when my patients are seemingly über-concerned about their cholesterol, the HIV management parameters, such as the CD4 and viral load counts, getting their influenza vaccine on time, etc, yet, continue to smoke with reckless abandon. Apart from the HIV medications, quitting smoking is the single most important healthy choice that they can make.

Lately, I have been handing out the Quit Now Virginia smokers quitline pamphlet to all of my patients who smoke. 

What evidence exists to suggests that quitlines are effective smoking cessation interventions?

Here is a scholarly (and open access) publication on smoking cessation quitlines. Bottom line,  smoking cessation quitlines are of varied structure yet most employ counseling with follow up calls to assist, encourage and promote smoking cessation. The efficacy of quitlines for smoking cessation is supported by various studies.

From my perspective, quitlines represent a convenient, evidence-based referral resource for physicians advocating smoking cessation but who cannot themselves provide the intensive intervention and follow up needed.

I am a big proponent of smoking cessation quitlines.

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