Brief Tobacco Intervention for Referral Partners

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Your Role in Treatment and Education: Ask, Advise, Refer

As an Illinois Tobacco Quitline Referral Partner, you can be a major supporter in your patient, client, or employee’s journey to quit tobacco use. This section is intended to provide you with simple steps and suggested language you can use to start a conversation about tobacco use and provide evidence-based resources to those interested in quitting. Quitting tobacco is one of the biggest challenges many people face in their lives. However, those who have support are more likely to quit tobacco forever than people who quit without help. Your support matters!

According to a 2023 Southern Illinois tobacco use assessment, over 23% of adults in our region report being current smokers. This rate significantly exceeds:

– Illinois State Average: 12%
– USA National Average: 11.5%
– Rural USA: 19.0%

Understanding these figures is crucial in addressing and strategizing tobacco cessation efforts in our rural communities.

To gauge a patient, client, or employee’s current tobacco use and their interest in quitting, healthcare providers and employers should incorporate Brief Tobacco Intervention into conversations. This process focuses on enhancing the motivation of tobacco users to make a change and connecting them with resources to help make their next quit a success

Based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and American Lung Association (ALA), there are 3 main steps to follow when using Brief Tobacco Intervention:

ASK about tobacco product use

ADVISE about the benefits of quitting and the support available

REFER people that are interested in quitting to cessation counseling and nicotine replacement therapies (NRT)

Ask-Advise-Refer (AAR) is an abbreviated version of The 5 A’s – a model framework designed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to facilitate the assessment of tobacco use during clinical interactions. Since 2008, the five major steps to intervention (The 5 A’s) have been recommended worldwide for healthcare providers to promote smoking cessation to their patients.

This framework includes the following components:

ASK about current tobacco use at every visit

ADVISE the patient to quit in a clear, strong, and personalized manner

ASSESS readiness to quit at this time

ASSIST the patient in quitting

ARRANGE for follow-up

Healthcare providers or employers who are Illinois Tobacco Quitline Referral Partners may achieve their goal of supporting an individual’s journey to quit smoking by asking them about current tobacco use, advising about the benefits of quitting, and, if they are ready to quit and would like assistance in obtaining cessation counseling or nicotine replacement therapy, referring them to the Illinois Tobacco Quitline.