Nearly all smokers are aware that smoking negatively impacts their health, and almost all of them have tried and want to quit smoking. So how can healthcare professionals (HCPs) help them quit?
Smoking can be viewed as a chronic disease and not just a bad habit; there are behavioural and chemical aspects to addiction. While some people can quit smoking with little or no support, some simply cannot as they may have complex behavioural issues and are generally more nicotine addicted. These smokers usually meet the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) criteria for Tobacco Use Disorder. HCPs can successfully treat Tobacco Use Disorder, but they must be able to identify and treat, or refer if needed.
The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) recently published an update to their guideline on smoking cessation for HCPs, which includes the recommendation to advise all smokers to quit regardless of their readiness and to start nicotine replacement therapy as combination therapy, among others. These guidelines serve as a strong foundation around which HCPs should base their decisions; the more experience they gain, the better treatment can be tailored to patient needs.
The webinar “What does and what doesn't work in smoking cessation? Patients and experts tell all”, held live last 3 December 2020, was developed and presented by a faculty of accredited Tobacco Treatment Specialists with clinical backgrounds in nursing, pharmacy and general practice. Now you can access the recording of the webinar and hear straight from the experts how they help their patients quit smoking for good.
Click here to access the webinar recording
At the end of watching this webinar, you should be able to:
List recent changes to recommendations in the RACGP “Supporting smoking cessation: a guide for health professionals”
Explain the rationale behind these changes
Assess a patient’s need for and tailor pharmacotherapy for smoking cessation based on the Pharmacotherapy Treatment Algorithm
Implement a system in practice to identify patients who smoke
Offer patients who smoke advice and treatment (or referral), including continued follow-up towards successful long-term cessation
You will be asked to complete pre- and post-activity assessments. General practitioners, nurses and pharmacists can earn continuing professional development points for completing this activity.