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NAQC Newsroom: Tobacco Control

Information about the Quit VET Quitline and Referral by State Quitlines

Monday, September 23, 2013  
Posted by: Natalia Gromov

Dear Colleagues:

NAQC has received a number of inquiries about the quitline services available to U.S. veterans through the Department of Veteran’s Affairs and when referral to that quitline would be appropriate. Colleagues at Veteran’s Affairs and NCI have provided the information below as a guide for state quitlines.

The Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA), in collaboration with the NCI, has launched Quit VET a national, toll-free smoking cessation quitline for Veterans who receive their health care from the VA and who need individualized support to quit smoking.

Trained smoking cessation counselors work with Veterans to develop a personalized quit plan and discuss strategies to prevent smoking relapses. Quit VET is a proactive-based service with counselors making up to 4 follow-up telephone calls to Veterans to help them stay quit. These services are available in both English and Spanish. Quit VET counselors are knowledgeable about the VA health care system and encourage Veterans to also see their VA health care provider for support in quitting smoking.

Quit VET is not meant to replace existing quitline services available through 1-800-QUIT-NOW. Quit VET is available only for Veterans who receive their health care in the VA’s health care system. Approximately 8 million of the 23 million Veterans in the U.S. receive their health care in the VA health care system and are eligible to use Quit Vet. Quitlines who prescreen their clients for Veteran status should also determine whether the client receives health care at a VA facility prior to providing the caller with information about Quit VET (see sample script).

Quit VET is available at 1-855-QUIT VET (1-855-784-8838), Monday-Friday, 8 am-8 pm ET. For more information on Veteran’s Affairs smoking cessation services, including Quit VET, please visit http://www.publichealth.va.gov/smoking.

Sample Script:

Caller identifies him/herself as a Veteran.

COUNSELOR: You said that you are a Veteran. Do you receive any of your health care from a VA facility? (This can include inpatient and outpatient visits, mental health services, prescription fills/pharmacy services)

VETERAN CALLER: Yes, I see a doctor at the VA.

COUNSELOR: You may want to consider talking with your VA health care provider about quitting smoking, they can give you medications to help you quit. VA also has a quitline specifically for Veterans receiving their health care through VA. You can call this quitline at 1-855-QUIT VET or 1-855-784-8838. It is toll free and available 8am-8pm Eastern, Monday through Friday.

If you have questions about Quit VET or Veteran’s Affairs smoking cessation services, please send them to publichealth@va.gov.


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