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Free Webinar: Smoking, Nicotine, and the Brain

Posted by Kristin Harms

Aug 31, 2017 12:37:19 PM

The California Smokers’ Helpline and its training and technical assistance arm, the Center for Tobacco Cessation, are pleased to host this free webinar on Wednesday, September 20th from noon to 1 pm PST, Smoking, Nicotine, and the Brain.

Webinar Overview

Tobacco and related products exert their addictive potential through nicotine. This webinar will review the mechanisms through which these products deliver nicotine and the through which neural pathways nicotine exerts is effects on the brain.

The implications of neuroscience on both the health of active tobacco product users and on tobacco product use cessation treatment strategies will be discussed.

The webinar will conclude with a discussion on the clinical and organizational implications associated with implementing smoking cessations strategies, in light of the research on nicotine and the brain.

Register Now!

Webinar Objectives

By the conclusion of the webinar, participants will be able to:

  1. Discuss the mechanisms through which nicotine is commonly delivered.
  2. Identify the brain structures upon which nicotine exerts its effects.
  3. Summarize the implications of this neuroscience on clinical and organization smoking cessation efforts.


Brian Hurley, MD, MBA, DFASAM
Assistant Professor of Addiction Medicine
UCLA Department of Family Medicine

Brian_Hurley.jpgBrian Hurley, MD, MBA, DFASAM is an addition psychiatrist and the Medical Director for Substance Use Related Care Integration at the Los Angeles County Health Agency. Brian is currently the Treasurer of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) and gives presentations around the world related to addiction medicine. He is board certified in general psychiatry, addiction psychiatry, and addiction medicine.

He serves on the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology’s Addiction Psychiatry examination writing committee. Brian completed the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholars Program at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), and was previously a UCLA - Veterans Administration National Quality Scholar at the VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System. He completed a fellowship program in addiction psychiatry at New York University School of Medicine. He completed residency training at the Massachusetts General Hospital and McLean Hospital, where he was Chief Resident in Addiction Psychiatry.


New Mobile App from the California Smokers' Helpline!

Posted by Jeein Kim

Jul 13, 2017 1:38:15 PM

Screen 1.pngThe California Smokers’ Helpline is pleased to announce its new, free quit smoking mobile app for iPhone, No Butts. No Butts uses proven methods to help smokers quit including a personalized quit plan and information about effective quitting aids.

The app also features other useful tools like a personal log of smoking triggers, motivational reminders, and a variety of quit smoking tips.

This free app is currently available only for iPhones but will also be available for Android phones in the future. To download the app from the Apple Store, please click the button below:

Download App Now!

Please feel free to share this post with your patients, clients, friends and family. Since this is our first version of the app, we also appreciate any feedback you may have about it. Please feel free to email any comments or suggestions to nobuttsmobileapp@ucsd.edu.


Pharmacists Can Help Smokers Quit Under California Law

Posted by Megan Maddox

Jun 9, 2017 12:05:02 PM

SB 493 Expands Scope of Practice for Licensed Pharmacists

Pharmacist-Patient-Image.jpgIn 2013, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill 493, authored by Senator Ed Hernandez, which for the first time ever, acknowledged pharmacists as legitimate healthcare providers and had also expanded the scope of practice for pharmacists to offer more patient care services beyond their most familiar function of drug dispensing. SB 493 was introduced in the Legislature as a response to the State’s physician shortage, especially after California had expanded coverage to millions of people under the Affordable Care Act.

One of the critical expanded authorities that came from SB 493 was the ability for all licensed pharmacists in the State to provide and offer nicotine replacement products for smoking cessation. Prior to SB 493, providing nicotine replacement therapy was limited to pharmacists who worked in either an inpatient setting or an integrated system.

Pharmacists Can Better Assist Patients with Smoking Cessation

Pharmacists who provide nicotine replacement therapy are not just selling the nicotine replacement products themselves, but they are also assisting patients with tobacco cessation using patient specific interventions, including referring patients to quitlines, such as the California Smokers’ Helpline, and other resources that are available within the community. Before a pharmacist even offers nicotine replacement therapy, they will evaluate their patients for any specific factors including precautions or contraindications for medication therapy. In addition, extensive counseling is done by the pharmacist with their patient on the appropriate use of smoking cessation medications such as dosing amounts, how to administer the product, and any possible adverse effects.

SB 493 opened the doors for retail and community pharmacists to be able to transform their business model by offering more preventative healthcare services, like nicotine replacement therapy. Most importantly, pharmacists have an opportunity to be leaders in the fight against nicotine addiction by decreasing the use of tobacco products and promoting smoking cessation especially since they interface with patients frequently throughout the day.

The health benefits for patients who participate in a smoking cessation program are incredible considering the damaging effects of nicotine addiction. Smoking tobacco products increases the chance of lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, coronary heart disease, stroke, and peripheral vascular disease among others.

Patient Access to Care Increased

Patients are particularly at an advantage of receiving nicotine replacement therapy from their community pharmacist because the service can be provided more accessibly, rather than having to make an appointment to see their primary care physician which can take several weeks.  Patients who want to quit smoking and begin a smoking cessation program with their local pharmacist will see major improvements in their health and will significantly reduce the risk of premature death. 

The California Pharmacists Association was instrumental in advocating for SB 493 (Hernandez) and were sponsors of the legislation. CPhA’s CEO, Jon Roth recalls that the timing of this legislation was impeccable. “SB 493 was looked upon by the pharmacy profession as the perfect storm. For years, pharmacists had been overlooked as healthcare providers who could play a significant role in improving health outcomes and reducing overall healthcare spending through their expertise in medication management. After the Affordable Care Act had passed, California’s Medi-Cal program grew to over 13 million beneficiaries, which is about a third of the state’s population. Physicians became overwhelmed and we saw that many were no longer accepting Medi-Cal patients. So the need for pharmacists to bridge this gap in care was not only imperative, but it just made sense.”

Protocol for Pharmacists Furnishing Nicotine Replacement Products

Once the bill was signed into law, the California Board of Pharmacy and the Medical Board of California were responsible for developing protocols for pharmacists to follow when providing the authorized services outlined in SB 493 and determining the appropriate training requirements.

The entire protocol and training requirements for pharmacists to furnish nicotine replacement products is available here and summarized as follows:

  • Pharmacists have the authority to furnish nicotine replacement products approved by the FDA.
  • The purpose is to provide timely access to nicotine replacement products and to ensure the patient receives the appropriate information to initiate smoking cessation medication therapy. When a pharmacist initiates or receives requests for smoking cessation treatment he or she must:
    • Review the patient’s current tobacco use and quit attempts
    • Ask the patient a series of screening questions outlined in the protocol
    • Review instructions for use with every patient
    • Recommend additional assistance and resources such as helplines or local programs
    • Answer any questions the patient may have
  • A pharmacist may select any nicotine replacement product (alone or in combination) from the list of therapies specified by the Board of Pharmacy which shall be updated and maintained on the Board’s website.
  • The pharmacist shall notify the patient’s primary care provider of any prescription drugs or devices furnished to the patient for smoking cessation treatment.
  • The pharmacist must document each nicotine replacement product provided and securely store this information in a patient medication record for at least three years.
  • Before initiating any smoking cessation treatment, a pharmacist must complete a two hour continuing education program specific to smoking cessation therapy and nicotine replacement therapy.
  • Pharmacists must complete ongoing continuing education focused on smoking cessation therapy every two years. Pharmacists must ensure that patient confidentiality and privacy are maintained. 

Online Training from the California Pharmacists Association

The California Pharmacists Association (CPhA) offers pharmacists who want to provide nicotine replacement therapy to their patients an online webinar program that is approved by the Board of Pharmacy. This two-hour home study course is specific to California pharmacists and fulfils the training requirement needed before initiating smoking cessation treatment.  Participants who complete the online program and successfully pass the post-test will receive 2 hours (0.20 CEUs) of Continuing Pharmacy Education Credit. Each year this program will be updated to reflect any new regulatory or practice changes. Therefore, pharmacists can take this course every two years in order to remain compliant with state law.

New Fact Sheet from the California Smokers' Helpline

In addition, pharmacists can utilize the latest fact sheet provided by the California Smokers Helpline on furnishing nicotine replacement therapy for smoking cessation.

Today is World No Tobacco Day

Posted by Kristin Harms

May 31, 2017 11:12:03 AM

News Release

Action to stamp out tobacco use can help countries prevent millions of people falling ill and dying from tobacco-related disease, combat poverty and, according to a first-ever WHO report, reduce large-scale environmental degradation.

On World No Tobacco Day 2017, WHO is highlighting how tobacco threatens the development of nations worldwide, and is calling on governments to implement strong tobacco control measures. These include banning marketing and advertising of tobacco, promoting plain packaging of tobacco products, raising excise taxes, and making indoor public places and workplaces smoke-free.

Tobacco’s health and economic costs

Tobacco use kills more than 7 million people every year and costs households and governments over US$ 1.4 trillion through healthcare expenditure and lost productivity.

"Tobacco threatens us all," says WHO Director-General Dr Margaret Chan. "Tobacco exacerbates poverty, reduces economic productivity, contributes to poor household food choices, and pollutes indoor air."

Dr Chan adds: "But by taking robust tobacco control measures, governments can safeguard their countries' futures by protecting tobacco users and non-users from these deadly products, generating revenues to fund health and other social services, and saving their environments from the ravages tobacco causes."

All countries have committed to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which aims to strengthen universal peace and eradicate poverty. Key elements of this agenda include implementing the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, and by 2030 reducing by one third premature death from noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), including heart and lung diseases, cancer, and diabetes, for which tobacco use is a key risk factor.

2017 World No Tobacco Day infographic-poverty.png

Tobacco scars the environment

The first-ever WHO report, Tobacco and its environmental impact: an overview, also shows the impact of this product on nature, including:

  • Tobacco waste contains over 7000 toxic chemicals that poison the environment, including human carcinogens.
  • Tobacco smoke emissions contribute thousands of tons of human carcinogens, toxicants, and greenhouse gases to the environment. And tobacco waste is the largest type of litter by count globally.
  • Up to 10 billion of the 15 billion cigarettes sold daily are disposed in the environment.
  • Cigarette butts account for 30–40% of all items collected in coastal and urban clean-ups.

Tobacco threatens women, children, and livelihoods

Tobacco threatens all people, and national and regional development, in many ways, including:

  • Poverty: Around 860 million adult smokers live in low- and middle-income countries. Many studies have shown that in the poorest households, spending on tobacco products often represents more than 10% of total household expenditure – meaning less money for food, education and healthcare.
  • Children and education: Tobacco farming stops children attending school. 10%–14% of children from tobacco-growing families miss class because of working in tobacco fields.
  • Women: 60%–70% of tobacco farm workers are women, putting them in close contact with often hazardous chemicals.
  • Health: Tobacco contributes to 16% of all noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) deaths.

For more information, please contact:

Paul Garwood
WHO Department of Communications
Telephone: +41 22 791 15 78
Mobile: +41 79 603 72 94
Email: garwoodp@who.int

Christian Lindmeier
WHO Department of Communications
Telephone: +41 22 791 1948
Mobile: +41 79 500 6552
Email: lindmeierch@who.int

Study Utilizes eConsult System to Improve Access to Helpline Services for Underserved Los Angeles County Residents

Posted by Kristin Harms

May 11, 2017 11:48:23 AM

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif.--()--Safety Net Connect (SNC), a leading provider of innovative healthcare technology for organizations assisting underserved populations, is pleased to announce that its electronic consultation “eConsult” system used by Los Angeles County Department of Health Services (LADHS) is engaged in a two-year-long University of California, Davis (UC Davis) study to measure the benefits of an integrative approach to tobacco cessation, in partnership with California Smokers’ Helpline (Helpline), a free, evidence-based smoking cessation program funded by the California Department of Public Health, the Centers for Disease Control, and First 5 California.

This collaborative project, funded through a Community Practice-Based Research Planning Award from the Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program (TRDRP) of California, was launched with the aim of creating and fostering long-term sustainable partnerships to conduct cost-effective, high quality tobacco cessation programs that are replicable across clinics throughout California. Several months into the project, SNC’s eConsult technology has already demonstrated a positive change in the delivery of tobacco cessation services for underserved populations, while increasing access to evidence-based tobacco treatment.

“The partnership with Safety Net Connect, the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services (LADHS), and the Helpline is a great opportunity to break down barriers to treatment, help smokers gain access to proven cessation methods, and positively impact the health and wellness of the low income patients served by LADHS,” says Gary Tedeschi, PhD, Clinical Director, California Smokers’ Helpline.

How the Helpline and eConsult Work Together. As the nation’s second largest public health system serving 670,000 patients each year, LADHS has utilized SNC’s eConsult technology since 2014 to power its web-based care coordination platform that connects 5,000 primary care providers with community-based specialists, averaging 17,000 eConsult requests per month. Leveraging this industry-tested system, the UC Davis study expands the scope of eConsult for LADHS providers by offering direct referrals for its large population of tobacco-using patients – most of whom are low socioeconomic; linguistically, racially, ethnically, diverse; and geographically dispersed – to free, multilingual telephone-based tobacco cessation counseling services at the Helpline. In addition to improving access to care, the integration of LADHS/SNC eConsult and the Helpline facilitates an unprecedented connection between disparate electronic health records systems across LADHS and community clinic providers.

“Working with Safety Net Connect has dramatically increased access to Helpline services among the hundreds of thousands of patients served by the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services,” says Antonio Mayoral, Director of Operations and Information Technology for the California Smokers’ Helpline. “We hope to have the opportunity to work with other providers throughout California who utilize Safety Net Connect’s eConsult solution.”

“This is an exciting opportunity to expand access to services for everyone in the Los Angeles community who wants to pursue healthy lifestyle choices,” says Chris Cruttenden, President of SNC. “We are proud to partner with the Smokers’ Helpline and to expand our relationship with LADHS to include this important collaborative initiative.”

About California Smokers’ Helpline

The California Smokers’ Helpline (Helpline) is a free, evidence-based, telephone counseling program for quitting smoking, proven in clinical trials to double a smoker’s chance of quitting. Multilingual services include telephone counseling, self-help materials, chat, and text messaging. The Helpline is operated by the Moores UCSD Cancer Center under the direction of Shu-Hong Zhu, PhD, Professor of Family and Preventive Medicine and is funded by the California Department of Public Health, the Centers for Disease Control, and First 5 California. For more information, please visit www.nobutts.org.

About Los Angeles County Department of Health Services

The Los Angeles County Department of Health Services (LADHS) is the second largest municipal health system in the nation. The LADHS mission is to ensure access to high-quality, patient-centered, cost-effective health care to Los Angeles County residents through direct services at DHS facilities and through collaboration with community and university partners. For more information, please visit www.dhs.lacounty.gov.

About Safety Net Connect

Since 2009, Safety Net Connect (SNC) has partnered with public and private organizations to provide a multitude of successful and nationally recognized web-based healthcare solutions for underserved and safety net populations. SNC’s innovative solutions have reached over 5 million patients from clients such as Los Angeles Department of Health Services (LADHS), MedPoint, LA Care, Orange County Healthcare Agency, CalOptima, San Diego Healthcare Agency, and Cook County MHN (an Illinois Medicaid Project). For more information, please visit www.safetynetconnect.com.


Safety Net Connect
Kristine Nash-Wong

Common Myths about Smoking and Behavioral Health

Posted by Gary Tedeschi, PhD

May 9, 2017 12:02:13 PM

Older Man_Web.jpgMay is Mental Health Month and a good time to revisit some of the common myths about smoking and behavioral health.

People with behavioral health conditions (mental illness and substance use disorders) smoke at higher rates than those without behavioral health conditions.  Alarmingly, people with mental illness and substance used disorders are dying up to 25 years earlier than the general population. The major causes of death are often smoking related cancer, heart disease, and lung disease.1,2

Unfortunately, there are still misconceptions that smokers with behavioral health conditions are not interested in smoking cessation and lack the ability to quit.  There are also concerns that these smokers will experience increased psychiatric symptoms when they quit.3 As a result, providers may not include smoking cessation in their treatment plans.  Instead, they focus primarily on behavioral health symptom management.

The reality is that people with mental illness and substance use disorders want to quit smoking and can quit successfully. Health care professionals can play an essential role in this process. Providers can bolster a broad health and wellness philosophy for patients by seeing tobacco cessation as a key component of behavioral health treatment and recovery.

Myths and Facts About Smokers with Behavioral Health Conditions

Here are some common myths and facts about smokers with behavioral health conditions.

Myth #1: Persons with mental illness and substance use disorders don’t want to quit.

Fact: The majority of persons with mental illness and substance use disorders want to quit smoking and want information on cessation services and resources.

Several research studies indicate that the majority of persons with behavioral health conditions want to quit smoking and want information on cessation services and resources. 4, 5, 6 

Myth #2:  Persons with mental illness and substance use disorders can’t quit smoking.

Fact:  Persons with mental illness and substance use disorders can successfully quit using tobacco.

There is a growing body of literature indicating that this clientele can quit.  For example, results from a large, internationally run randomized controlled trial showed that smokers with behavioral health conditions can quit successfully using nicotine patches, Zyban, or Chantix, compared to placebo, with no significant increase in neuropsychiatric adverse events.7

Myth #3:  Smoking cessation worsens psychiatric symptoms.

Fact:  Smoking cessation can improve psychiatric symptoms.

This myth has historical ties to the tobacco industry, which directly funded, or monitored, research supporting the idea that individuals with behavioral health conditions (schizophrenia in particular) were less susceptible to the harms of tobacco and that they needed tobacco as self-medication.  Fortunately, research has been emerging to debunk this myth.8,9

Myth #4:  Smoking cessation will threaten recovery for persons with substance use disorders.

Fact:  Smoking cessation can enhance long-term recovery for persons with substance use disorders.10

Research has shown that smoking cessation can encourage and support recovery.  For example, a systematic review of 17 studies found that concurrent tobacco cessation treatment with individuals in addictions treatment was associated with 25% increased abstinence from alcohol and illicit drugs six months or longer after treatment. 6

Increasingly, these myths about smoking and behavioral health are giving way to the facts. This is important for a clientele who will benefit greatly from an integrated treatment approach that includes smoking cessation as a priority focus.

For More Information

For more information about smoking and behavioral health, please visit our website or explore our free CE Courses on a variety of smoking and behavioral health issues.

1 Colton, C. W. & Manderscheid, R. W. (2006). Congruencies in increased mortality rates, years of potential life lost, and causes of death among public mental health clients in eight states. Preventing Chronic Disease, 3(2).

2 Walker, E. R., McGee, R. E., & Druss, B. G. (2015). Mortality in mental disorders and global disease burden implications: a systematic review and meta-analysis. JAMA psychiatry, 72(4), 334-341.

3 Prochaska, J. J. (2010). Failure to treat tobacco use in mental health and addiction treatment settings: A form of harm reduction? Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 110(3), 177- 182.

4 Prochaska, J. J., Rossi, J. S., Redding, C. A., Rosen, A. B., Tsoh, J. Y., Humfleet, G. L., . . . Hall, S. M. (2004). Depressed smokers and stage of change: Implications for treatment interventions. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 76(2), 143-151. doi:DOI: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2004.04.017

5 Prochaska, J. J.,Reyes, R.S., Schroeder, S.A., Daniels, A. S., Doederlein, A., & Bergeson, B. (2011). An online survey of tobacco use, intentions to quit, and cessation strateies among people living with bipolar disorder. Bipolar Disorders, 13(5-6), 466-473. doi:10.1111/j.1399-5618.2011.00944.x

6 Joseph, A. M., Willenbring, M. L., & Nugent, S. M. (2004). A randomized trial of concurrent versus delayed smoking intervention for patients in alcohol dependence treatment. Journal of Studies on Alcohol, 65(6), 681-691

7 Anthenelli, R. M., Benowitz, N. L., West, R., St Aubin, L., McRae, T., Lawrence, D., ... & Evins, A. E. (2016). Neuropsychiatric safety and efficacy of varenicline, bupropion, and nicotine patch in smokers with and without psychiatric disorders (EAGLES): a double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled clinical trial. The Lancet, 387(10037), 2507-2520.

8 Prochaska, J. J., Hall, S. M., Tsoh, J. Y., Eisendrath, S., Rossi, J. S., Redding, C. A., . . . Gorecki, J. A. (2008). Treating tobacco dependence in clinically depressed smokers: Effect of smoking cessation on mental health functioning. American Journal of Public Health, 98(3), 446-448. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2006.101147

9 Evins, A., Cather, C., Deckersbach, T., Freudenreich, O., Culhane, M., Olm-Shipman, C., . . . Rigotti, N. (2005). A double-blind placebo-controlled trial of bupropion sustained-release for smoking cessation in schizophrenia. Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology, 25(3), 218-225. doi:10.1097/01.jcp.0000162802.54076.18

10 Prochaska, J. J., Delucchi, K., & Hall, S. M. (2004). A meta-analysis of smoking cessation interventions with individuals in substance abuse treatment or recovery. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 72(6), 1144-1156. doi:10.1037/0022-006X.72.6.1144

Smokers Have Help to Kick the Habit as Tobacco Tax Increases

Posted by Kristin Harms

Mar 28, 2017 4:19:30 PM

California Department of Public Health
Number: 17-031 
Ali Bay or Corey Egel
March 28, 2017

Cigarette Tax Increases $2 on April 1

SACRAMENTO. In light of the new tobacco tax going into effect this week, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) reminds Californians that resources are available to help them kick the habit. 

On April 1, the tax on a pack of cigarettes will increase $2, from $0.87 to $2.87. This increase is a result of Proposition 56, the California Healthcare, Research and Prevention Tobacco Tax Act, which was approved by voters last November. 

Californians who want help to quit smoking can call the California Smokers’ Helpline at 1-800-NO-BUTTS. The Helpline provides smokers free telephone counseling and plans to help them quit. The Helpline is staffed with trained counselors who are fluent in English, Spanish, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean and Vietnamese. Additional resources and materials are available at www.nobutts.org.

“We know most smokers want to quit, and paying more for their habit could be the extra motivation they need to make an important life-saving step,” said CDPH Director and State Public Health Officer Dr. Karen Smith. “Quitting smoking helps protect your physical and financial health. A smoker who quits today could save nearly $1,500 in just one year.”  

Smoking remains the number one cause of preventable death and disease in California. About 3.1 million, or one out of nine, California adults smoke, and an estimated 34,000 Californians die from smoking-related diseases each year.

The state’s new tax increase also impacts tobacco products like electronic cigarettes and e-liquids, which are taxed based on their wholesale cost.

Proposition 56 funds tobacco-use prevention programs, the new state Oral Health Program and research on tobacco-related illnesses such as cancer and heart disease. It also strengthens the Medi-Cal health care system and provides additional resources for CDPH to enforce underage tobacco-sales laws. 

The California Tobacco Control Program was established by the Tobacco Tax and Health Protection Act of 1988. California’s comprehensive approach has changed social norms around tobacco use and secondhand smoke. California’s tobacco control efforts have reduced both adult and youth smoking rates by 50 percent, saved more than one million lives and have resulted in $134 billion worth of savings in health care costs. Learn more at TobaccoFreeCA.com.


Free Webinar: How to Start and Maintain a Smoking Cessation Group

Posted by Kristin Harms

Mar 14, 2017 11:31:35 AM

The California Smokers’ Helpline and its training and technical assistance arm, the Center for Tobacco Cessation, are pleased to host this free webinar on Thursday, March 23rd from noon to 1 pm PST, How to Start and Maintain a Smoking Cessation Group.

Webinar Overview

Group-Class-Shot.jpgSmoking cessation groups have been a mainstay of cessation interventions for years, but starting and maintaining groups can sometimes prove challenging.  In this webinar Ken Fitzgerald from the Stanislaus County Office of Education and Zoila Reyna, MPH from the American Lung Association will offer insights, tools and resources for getting cessation groups up and running and for keeping them going:

  • Ken will discuss the development of the Stop Tobacco And Nicotine Dependence (STAND) curriculum which was created as part of the smoke-free parks and colleges initiative, as well as recognize key partners and potential uses in local settings. 
  • Zoila will discuss how to successfully facilitate tobacco cessation groups for adults and how the Freedom from Smoking Facilitator Training content has helped healthcare professionals in clinical settings address tobacco cessation needs in their own organizations.

Register Now!


Ken Fitzgerald | Director of Student Services and Support
Stanislaus County Office of Education

Ken-Fitzgerald_200px.jpgKen has been coordinating public health and prevention programs in Stanislaus County since 2002.  His experience includes leading policy initiatives for smoke-free outdoor areas in parks and colleges  He also helped develop the Protecting Health And Slamming Tobacco (PHAST) Youth Coalition, which has grown into one of the largest tobacco prevention youth coalitions in California.  Ken led in the development of the tobacco cessation curriculum known as Stop Tobacco And Nicotine Dependence (STAND).  He provides training and technical assistance to schools and community organizations to support student wellness and strengthen school climate. 

Zoila Reyna, MPH | Charter Director of Health Education
American Lung Association in California

Zoila-Reyna_200px.jpgZoila trains and supports health professionals throughout California in tobacco cessation programs in both clinical and public settings. She received her Master’s Degree in Public Health from UC Davis. She has 10 years of experience in program management, community engagement, and public health programs for underserved populations, in both rural and urban areas.



New Provider Toolkit: Online Referral Options to Tobacco Treatment

Posted by Kristin Harms

Mar 6, 2017 12:50:27 PM


Download our free Provider Toolkit, Online Referral Options to Evidence-Based Tobacco Treatment, from the California Smokers’ Helpline and its training and technical assistance arm, the Center for Tobacco Cessation.

In 2015, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) determined that the California Smokers’ Helpline meets the Specialized Registry Reporting measure. Eligible professionals can choose to report smokers to the Helpline as part of their Meaningful Use Compliance.

The Helpline offers a variety of options for referring patients and clients to the Helpline's evidence-based telephone counseling for quitting smoking, including web-based referral, DIRECT messaging, and other Internet options.

Kristin Harms and Carrie Kirby with the California Smokers' Helpline describe the various options available for referring patients online to the Helpline including cost, technology requirements, and fulfillment of Meaningful Use Requirements.

Our free toolkit includes:

  • Webinar recording and slide deck
  • Provider flyer: Online Referral Options

Download Now!


FREE Webinar: Online Referral Options to Evidence-Based Tobacco Treatment

Posted by Kristin Harms

Feb 22, 2017 12:43:42 PM

JyothiMarbin_stethoscope.jpgThe California Smokers’ Helpline and its training and technical assistance arm, the Center for Tobacco Cessation, are pleased to host this free webinar on Wednesday, March 1st from noon to 1 pm PST, Online Referral Options to Evidence-Based Tobacco Treatment.

Webinar Overview

The California Smokers' Helpline offers a variety of options for referring patients and clients to the Helpline's evidence-based telephone counseling for quitting smoking, including web-based referral, DIRECT messaging, and other Internet options.

In 2015, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) determined that the California Smokers’ Helpline meets the Specialized Registry Reporting measure. Eligible professionals can choose to report smokers to the Helpline as part of their Meaningful Use Compliance.

Learn about the various options available for referring patients online to the Helpline, including cost, technology requirements, and fulfillment of Meaningful Use Requirements. Online referral offers health care providers a number of benefits:

  • Easy, convenient, secure
  • Referral to quitlines is associated with a significantly higher participation rate than simple advice to quit
  • Helps healthcare systems achieve and document Meaningful Use of Electronic Health Records

Register Now!


  • Kristin Harms, Communications Manager, California Smokers' Helpline
  • Carrie Kirby, M.S., Project Manager, California Smokers' Helpline
  • Anthony Mayoral, Director of Operations and IT, California Smokers' Helpline

About this Blog

The California Smokers' Helpline offers free, evidence-based tobacco cessation services in multiple languages to help smokers quit. We also offer free training and resources to health professionals to increase their knowledge and capacity for tobacco cessation.

Subscribe to Blog Updates

Contact Us

For more information about our free training and resources for health professionals, please contact the Helpline Communications Department at (858) 300-1010 or cshoutreach@ucsd.edu.

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