Freedom From Smoking For an Ohio Rural Community

April 01, 2018

Freedom From Smoking For an Ohio Rural Community

PROBLEM: According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), smoking is the leading cause of preventable death and disability in the U.S.

BACKGROUND: Smoking is more common among U.S. adults living in the Midwest compared to other regions. Smoking rate has fallen across the country by 27% since 1997. However, it has not declined that much in rural communities. Residents here are more likely to use tobacco products heavily at a younger age and be exposed to secondhand smoke at work than their counterparts in cities. According to the CDC, 69% of smokers want to quit. Though various interventions for smoking cessation are widely available, access to smoking cessation programs in rural communities is limited. According to the American Nurses Association, nurses have a tremendous potential to implement smoking cessation interventions effectively and advance reduction goals proposed by Healthy People 2010.

PURPOSE: American Lung Association’s Freedom From Smoking (FFS) programs are widely available, but implementation by a nursing leader and studying the outcome in a rural hospital setting is limited. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to look at the success of the FFS program in rural Ohio. DESIGN: Single case design AIM: Look at the participants of the FFS program in rural Ohio for: feasibility of program administered by nursing, smoking cessation rate, and methods used SAMPLE/SETTINGS: Smokers from Adams and Brown County who participated in the FFS program (N=12)

METHODS: Smokers actively participated in weekly FFS sessions (total 8 weeks) conducted by a nursing leader. Smoking cessation was assessed at the end of the program, and telephone calls were made every other month following program completion. RESULTS: 3 of 12 participants (25%) achieved complete abstinence from smoking. 9 of 12 achieved significant reduction in smoking (>50% reduction). 2 of the 3 participants that quit completely were treated with Chantix, and 1 used Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT). Overall, 8 of 12 used NRT, 2 used Chantix only, and 1 used combination therapy.

IMPLICATIONS: Nursing-implemented FFS involving counseling and pharmacological treatment can be successful in a rural hospital setting. A smoking cessation rate of 25% compares well with a FFS program in an urban setting (29% in 2 studies involving New York and Wisconsin residents). Future research into large-scale implementation of these programs in rural communities is necessary, as this population has higher smoking rates compared to urban and suburban populations.

By Felix Karthik

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