Purpose Tobacco use is the leading single cause of preventable death in our society. According to the Washington State Department of Health, in Newport, Washington, smoking rates are significantly higher compared to the rest of the state. In pregnant women, smoking rates in the Pend Oreille County is 23.3% compared to 12.6% in the rest of Washington. Based on these facts, three objectives were established: 1) Educate the community about the major health effects of smoking 2) Educate about guidelines for smoking cessation 3) Increase awareness of resources available for smoking cessation.
Methods Collect data on smoking rates and resources available for smoking cessation from the Tri-County and Newport Public Health Districts. To increase awareness of such resources and promote smoking cessation, present two workshops to the community and the medical staff in Newport Family Medicine Clinic. Develop patient education brochures, focusing on the health effects of smoking and guidelines for smoking cessation.
Summary of Results Smoking rates in Newport, Washington are significantly higher than rates in the state.The Tri-County Health District offers the “Tobacco Intervention Program,” which provides a free consultation and medication. Resources like this program are underutilized because smokers and health care providers are unaware of them. The presentations received positive reviews, indicating the workshop was effective in educating the community about the hazards of smoking, ways to quit, and available resources for smoking cessation.
Conclusion Smoking is a significant health problem that serves as a risk factor for many severe conditions like cancer and cardiovascular disease. Yet, many people from rural areas continue to smoke to alleviate the stress mainly stemming from their low economic status. It is imperative that health care providers screen patients who smoke, and promote smoking cessation by referring them to intervention programs like support groups and smoking cessation hotlines.
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