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NAQC Newsroom: Research

Collaborating with diabetes educators to promote smoking cessation for people with diabetes

Monday, September 19, 2011  
Posted by: Natalia Gromov



Smoking exacerbates the harmful effects of diabetes by increasing risk of diabetes-related complications such as cardiovascular disease, stroke, nephropathy, and neuropathy. To address the smoking cessation needs of people with diabetes, a partnership was formed among diabetes educators, the California Department of Public Health's Diabetes and Tobacco Control Programs, and the California Smokers' Helpline.


A task force composed of 8 diabetes educators voluntarily designed and implemented a statewide educational campaign titled, "Do You cAARd?" The program aimed to promote referrals to the state's tobacco quitline by diabetes educators. Intervention activities included development of a "toolkit" for diabetes educators, presentations at American Association of Diabetes Educators chapter meetings, distribution of pocket-sized smoking cessation materials, and a print media campaign.


The campaign reached 170 diabetes educators directly via educational presentations. A post-campaign online survey of 46 diabetes educators showed 80% had referred clients to the Helpline for smoking cessation support, 76% knew the Helpline's phone number, and 70% had distributed Helpline materials. More than 700 toolkits were downloaded, potentially reaching as many as 75% of California's 900 diabetes educators. The percentage of Helpline calls from people with diabetes and the proportion of callers referred by health care providers also increased over time.


This program partnership serves as a sustainable, efficient, replicable outreach model for smoking cessation.

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