Surprisingly easy ways to help patients quit smoking cigarettes
More than 42 million Americans reach for cigarettes regularly, but almost 70 percent of them say they want to quit. What gives? Maybe the traditional ways to quit smoking, such as going cold turkey or wearing a nicotine patch haven’t worked for them in the past. Thankfully, there are plenty of new ways to kick the smoking habit. Here are five approaches to share with patients who are trying to quit.
- Download a Quit Smoking App
There are plenty of downloadable quit smoking apps ready to coach patients along the way. Many former smokers recommend the LIVESTRONG MyQuit Coach, a free app available on iTunes.
2. Start a Quit Reward Fund
According to a study from The New England Journal of Medicine, putting money on the line can help smokers quit. Researchers found 15.7% of people successfully quit for at least six months when they were offered an $800 reward. Patients can set aside their own money as a deposit that they get back when they successfully quit.
- Ask Human Resources about Resources
Many employers offer smoking cessation programs, which offer cash rewards, savings on insurance or other perks for not taking a puff. According to the American Lung Association, up to 57% of their smoking cessation program participants reported quitting smoking by the end of the program. Freedom From Smoking®, offered by American Lung Association is an often recommended program.
- Quit Smoking with Meditation
For many smokers, the act of lighting up is automatic. But a Yale University study found meditating and practicing mindfulness can cancel that relationship and slash cravings. Recommend a mobile app like Stop Smoking – Mindfulness Meditation App to Cessation Smoking Support.
- Consider Medication
Over-the-counter nicotine patches are designed to lessen withdrawal symptoms and have been a go-to for decades. But if those haven’t worked prescription medications can reduce cravings or make smoking less enjoyable.
Measure Up! Medical Assistance with Smoking and Tobacco Use Cessation (MSC) HEDIS® measure looks at members 18 and older to assess different facets of providing medical assistance with smoking and tobacco use cessation:
- Advising smokers and tobacco users to quit
- Discussing cessation medications
- Discussing cessation strategies
Measure adherence is determined by member response through the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) Health Plan Survey.
November 2021 Anthem New Hampshire Provider News