The Foundation for Health Smart Consumers Expands Smoking Cessation Initiative

Apr 22, 2013, 16:56 ET from The Foundation for Health Smart Consumers

BASKING RIDGE, N.J., April 22, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Foundation for Health Smart Consumers is pleased to announce a major expansion of its smoking cessation initiative made possible by a national grant awarded to The Foundation by the Pfizer Independent Grants for Learning & Change and the support of the Smoking Cessation Leadership Center.

The Foundation for Health Smart Consumers currently provides a patient counseling education program for clinicians in retail-based clinics on a wide range of topics, including, but not limited to, smoking cessation. According to Mary Alice Lawless, Chairman, "This grant enables The Foundation to significantly expand this important public health effort." The INSPIRE Program, which includes the expanded smoking cessation resources, will reach additional nurse practitioners (NPs), physician assistants (PAs) and other healthcare professionals who provide care at retail clinics.  A core component of the INSPIRE program is a robust patient counseling toolkit available to clinicians online to increase the quantity and frequency of smoking cessation interventions in the convenient care setting. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that even brief advice from a clinician about smoking cessation can increase quit rates by up to by 66%. The INSPIRE program will be launched at the annual Retail Clinician Education Congress (RCEC) in May of 2013.  The initial phase of INSPIRE will continue through 2014.

This initiative is led by Dr. John Delfs, Senior Fellow at The Foundation for Health Smart Consumers and primary investigator for the INSPIRE Continuing Education program. Dr. Delfs reports, "Smoking is a public health issue which affects 1 in 5 adults and also 1 in 5 high school students. We are delighted at this opportunity to work with retail clinicians who, by using the INSPIRE approach, can save a life with an intervention of three minutes or less." He adds, "Retail clinicians can have a major impact on reducing illness and increasing quality of life through smoking cessation interventions."

The Foundation is implementing the INSPIRE program in collaboration with the Convenient Care Association (CCA) and in cooperation with their member clinic organizations. The CCA is the national trade association of companies and healthcare systems that provide consumers with accessible and affordable quality healthcare in retail-based locations. Currently, there are over 1,400 clinics in 36 states and the District of Columbia that provide healthcare services to consumers in high-traffic retail outlets, such as pharmacies and large retail chains.  CCA members represent over 95% of the 1,400+ retail clinics. To date, convenient care clinics have served more than 20 million patients. Executive Director, Tine Hansen-Turton explains, "Working together, the CCA and The Foundation for Health Smart Consumers will provide clinicians in retail clinics with access to training and proven tools for smoking cessation through the INSPIRE program. Our shared goal is to increase clinician confidence and interventions which will lead to more consumers successfully stopping smoking."

The INSPIRE program is commended by Walgreens Take Care Clinics, a network of professional health care clinics located at more than 370 Walgreens drugstores, which offer walk-in and appointment availability. According to Sandra Festa Ryan, MSN, CNPO, FCPP, FAANP and chief nurse practitioner officer, "Take Care Clinics look forward to working in collaboration with the INSPIRE program by providing outreach to our clinicians and sharing smoking cessation education materials to improve clinician interactions with patients."

The Retail Clinician Education Congress (RCEC), sponsored by Drug Store News (DSN), is the only educational conference focused solely on the retail clinician. Wayne Bennett, DSN Publisher and RCEC conference organizer, demonstrates his dedication to including the INSPIRE program at the conference by saying, "RCEC is committed to having the INSPIRE program offered as a clinical session each year." He adds, "Our goal is to have retail clinicians understand the importance of – and embrace their role in – smoking cessation because every clinician intervention is progress on the path to smoke-free living."

SOURCE The Foundation for Health Smart Consumers