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Connections - January 2010
Happy New Year!

2010 appears to be off to a very dynamic and mostly positive start on the cessation policy front: stimulus funds will soon be distributed to many state quitlines and national partners for increased access and services for smokers; the FDA is making progress on launching its new regulatory activities, including selection of its Scientific Advisory Committee; and cessation coverage has been included in health care reform legislation, although the legislation will face significant challenges in the new year.

Our colleagues at Trust for America’s Health offer the following suggestions for getting health care reform back on-track: communicate with your best contacts in Congressional leadership and the Administration (and of course your own members of Congress) to advocate for the strongest possible Prevention and Public Health Fund and Community Health Center Fund/Public Health Investment Fund. These funds will have a positive impact on health; have strong public support; and have bi-partisan Congressional support. According to Trust for America’s Health, Congress and the White House need to hear from your organizations now! Please take whatever action you can.

For those who have concerns about lobbying, you may want to participate in the Partnership for Prevention’s upcoming webinar:

Health Reform Update and Permissible Lobbying Webinar
Sponsored by Partnership for Prevention
Wednesday, February 3, 12:00–1:00 PM, EST
register now

Please let us know if you have any questions about health care reform or other cessation policy issues. We will keep you apprised of opportunities and changes related to coverage for cessation services.

Linda Bailey
President & CEO




NAQC News


NAQC Signs on to Health Care Reform Letter
The North American Quitline Consortium signed on to a letter sent to Congressional leadership and widely distributed to primary contacts at the Department of Health and Human Services and the White House. A version was also shared with all House and Senate offices. Organizations can still sign on to the letter and will be added to the Trust for Healthy Americans Web site and included in any subsequent distributions of the letter.
view letter



NAQC's 2010 Webinar Series to Kickoff February 3
The 2010 Webinar Series, "Building Blocks for Improving Quality: Topics and Tools for Quitlines,” will provide members the opportunity to review current practices against NAQC-recommended standards and the practices of colleagues; sharpen their quality-improvement tools while discussing topics that impact on the effectiveness and efficiency of services; and increase their understanding of the resources available to strengthen quality improvement efforts. Topics have been selected based on valuable input from NAQC members and are intended to support the achievement of NAQC’s strategic goals and objectives.

Be sure to join us on February 3 from 3:30–5:00 PM, EST or February 5th from 12:30–2:00 PM, EST for Call Center Metrics: Essential Elements for Ensuring Quality. During this seminar members will hear a presentation by the author of Call Center Metrics: Best Practices in Performance Measurement and Management to Maximize Quitline Efficiency and Quality. Penny Reynolds will review highlights from her draft of this most recent Quality Improvement Initiative Issue Paper and participants will take part in a facilitated discussion of the paper’s strengths and weaknesses.
A look ahead on the webinar calendar:
April 7th: 3:30–5 pm EST and April 9th: 12:30–2:00 pm EST
Improving the Quality of the Counseling Intervention: Strategies for Quitlines

For questions related to the 2010 Webinar Series or the Quality Improvement Initiative please contact Tamatha Thomas-Haase at tthomas-haase@naquitline.org.



Final MDS Update Materials Now Available

The MDS Update process is now complete, and final materials for implementation are now available on the NAQC Web site. Implementation materials include:
  • Introduction
  • Intake questions
  • Intake questions with changes since July 2009 highlighted
  • Follow-up questions
  • Follow-up questions with changes since July 2009 highlighted
  • Comparison of original 2005 MDS to Final Updated 2009 MDS
  • Annotated Tables: Detailed notes on each item, including tips for those asking the questions, as well as tips for analysis and reporting.
  • MDS FAQs
NAQC and CDC have worked closely to ensure the CDC’s Stimulus Funding reporting requirements for quitlines will contain the same questions as are currently on the Final MDS Update materials.

The suggested implementation date is the beginning of the fiscal period, or an alternative date that meets the needs and goals of each quitline. Technical assistance for implementation is available by contacting NAQC’s Director of Research, Jessie Saul, at jsaul@naquitline.org.



KIQNIC Workgroup and Survey Update

Why is the KIQNIC Workgroup important?
KIQNIC members provide the "voice of quitlines” to the research process, making sure study results are interpreted appropriately, and with sufficient context. Workgroup members also provide critical guidance around what information will be most useful to members, and in what format.

What happened with the survey?
  • 94% response rate among organizations (202 individuals!)
  • We exceeded the target response rate of 85%. Many thanks to all survey respondents who helped us reach this goal!
Since the organizational response rate is above 85%, we are confident the network maps will be a legitimate reflection of the relationships that exist in the field.

When will we see results?
Results will be presented to the NAQC membership in April 2010 as part of the NAQC seminar series. Additional materials will be produced in collaboration with the KIQNIC Workgroup, to help maximize the usefulness of KIQNIC findings for members and the broader quitline community.

When will the next survey take place?
  • The year 2 survey will be distributed in May 2010.
  • The next KIQNIC Update will provide more information on this process.
Who is involved from NAQC?
The KIQNIC Workgroup has been integrally involved in the research process, providing the voice of NAQC members in a range of key activities:
  • creating the survey
  • finalizing the conceptual framework for the study
  • developing a participatory model for collaboration with researchers throughout the data collection, analysis, and dissemination process
Many thanks to the members who have served during this first year of the project! Please visit the KIQNIC page on the NAQC website for a list of all members during the first year of the project.

How can I get more involved?
The KIQNIC Workgroup is made up of 10 NAQC members who provide regular input and feedback on survey instruments, interpretation of results, and provide important guidance to the research team on how best to share results with members. View the current list of workgroup members. However, the involvement of the entire membership is just as critical to ensuring the success of this research project. Be on the lookout for upcoming webinars highlighting findings so far, research updates, and ways to apply what we are finding to our practice. Your participation in these discussions and input on how to translate these findings into meaningful practice updates is the best way to get involved.



NAQC Staffing Change

NAQC staff would like to thank Brenda Bryan for her outstanding contributions to the quitline community as NAQC’s communications manager the past three years. As Brenda moves on to another exciting position, we would like to acknowledge her many contributions: launching NAQC’s new Web site in July 2009; contributing to and editing countless reports, issue papers, fact sheets, brochures and Web pages; and skillfully leading NAQC’s communications efforts. We wish Brenda the best in her new endeavors.

We are also pleased to welcome Gannon Wegner as NAQC’s new communications manager. He has over 10 years experience in communications and social marketing. His most recent position afforded him the opportunity to work closely with Arizona’s quitline; he rebuilt their Web site and redesigned their marketing collateral with consistent branding/messaging. Gannon presented on social marketing at the 13th World Conference on Tobacco or Health in Washington, D.C. and the 8th ACCESS Conference in Seattle, WA. His communication efforts have been recognized by the National Association of Counties, the Arizona Public Health Association, and Printing Industry of Minnesota. Gannon holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication. You can reach Gannon at gwegner@naquitline.org or 602-279-2719.



Connect with Other NAQC Members
NAQC’s ListServ offers an opportunity for NAQC members to connect with one another. As a ListServ subscriber, you can ask questions, post comments, and share resources. Post your information to the NAQC Listserv or become a new subscriber by emailing us at naqc@listserv.naquitline.org.




Tobacco Control


CDC to Issue ARRA (Stimulus) Funding Awards

In September, NAQC published an e-Bulletin announcing the opportunity for states to apply for about $120 million and communities to apply for $373 million in ARRA (stimulus) funds. The funds for states were available as follows:
  • $45M for statewide policy and environmental changes on nutrition, exercise and tobacco (non-competitive)
  • $30M for competitive special policy work (expect 10-15 awards)
  • $44.5M for tobacco cessation through quitline and media (non-competitive)
NAQC has learned that budget negotiations for these funds are underway between states and CDC. CDC anticipates sending notices of awards for the stimulus funds to states by the end of January. Stimulus funds will be available to states as soon as they receive their notices of awards.

CDC expects to award the stimulus funding for communities ($373 million) by the end of February. The internal CDC process is moving forward on these awards.



New Federal Funding Opportunity
HHS is making $18.75 million available for 150 awards of up to $125,000 per year for up to five years for organizations that qualify for its drug-free communities awards.
  • Eligibility: Community-based coalitions focused on addressing youth substance use.
  • Purpose: The purpose of the program is to establish and strengthen collaboration to support the efforts of community coalitions working to prevent and reduce substance use among youth.
  • Deadline: March 19
  • Information: 1-800-666-6380


2010 Alabama Tobacco Quitline Telephonic Services RFA Released

ADPH is seeking competitive applications to operate the quitline to meet the needs of Alabamians seeking access to individualized counseling, educational materials, nicotine replacement therapy, and referral to onsite cessation programs.
download RFA



Partnership for Prevention to Fund Implementation of ACTTION Recommendations
Earlier this year, Partnership for Prevention was awarded a grant from the Pfizer Foundation to help the organization further engage states in promoting the Call for ACTTION (Access to Cessation Treatment for Tobacco in our Nation) recommendations established in November 2008. The goal of the Call for ACTTION is to ensure every tobacco user has access to comprehensive treatment services by the year 2020. Through this grant, Partnership will create a mini-grant program for states who wish to replicate the National Working Group for ACTTION’s efforts and push forward the recommendations of the Call for ACTTION on a local level.

Partnership for Prevention will award 5-8 state grants of $20,000–40,000 for the implementation of innovative strategies to increase access to tobacco cessation treatments. Funds are to be used primarily for the development of state alliances/summit meetings and the creation of strategic plans. Grant proposals must be submitted by February 24, 2010.
read full story
view RFP



CBS Highlights Individual Counseling as Part of Quit Smoking Treatment Plan
Mayo Clinic Nicotine Dependence Center director Dr. Richard Hurt speaks to The Early Show’s Harry Smith about a treatment plan for quitting smoking, including individual counseling.
watch segment



FDA Comment Period Ends February 18
Docket No. FDA-2010-N-0020, CTP 200910. Use of Tobacco Marketing Descriptors to Convey Modified Risk; Request for Comments. Page 2879 [FR Doc. 2010–784] Comments due February 18, 2010.



The More You Know Campaign Promotes 1-800-QUIT-NOW
NBC Universal's The More You Know campaign now includes three anti-smoking messages. These PSAs will be placed in NBC’s public service rotation to air during primetime and late night programming starting the week of January 15. All three include 1-800-QUIT-NOW on screen during the 15-second spots.
watch PSAs



Canada Celebrates National Non-Smoking Week January 17-23
National Non-Smoking Week (NNSW) has been observed throughout Canada for more than 30 years. It is one of the longest running and most important events in Canada’s ongoing public health education effort. Established in 1977 by the Canadian Council for Tobacco Control (formerly the Canadian Council on Smoking and Health), its goals are:

  • to educate Canadians about the dangers of smoking
  • to prevent people who do not smoke from beginning to smoke and becoming addicted to tobacco
  • to help people quit smoking
  • to promote the right of individuals to breathe air unpolluted by tobacco smoke
  • to de-normalize the tobacco industry, tobacco industry marketing practices, tobacco products, and tobacco use
  • to assist in the attainment of a smoke-free society in Canada

The theme for NNSW 2010 was "Quitting is contagious, pass it on!”



The Joint Commission to Launch Tobacco Treatment Pilot Study
The Joint Commission needs your help in testing new measures to address Tobacco and Alcohol Use and Treatment. Draft measure specifications are expected to be ready for pilot-testing by March. Accredited hospitals of all sizes and types are invited to join this groundbreaking pilot study. By volunteering, your hospital can be a leader in devising standards to improve quality of care in your facility and in hospitals nationwide.
view recruitment invitation



New Survey Shows Slow Decline in Youth Smoking, Troubling Increase in Smokeless Tobacco Use
The 2009 Monitoring the Future Survey released by the National Institute of Drug Abuse shows the nation continues to make gradual progress in reducing youth smoking, but declines have slowed significantly compared to the dramatic gains early in the decade. In especially troubling news, the survey also finds that smokeless tobacco use has increased among 10th and 12th graders in recent years; this is the same period during which tobacco companies have introduced a slew of new smokeless tobacco products and significantly increased marketing for smokeless tobacco.
read full story



Legacy Board of Directors Filing Appeal to Ohio State Supreme Court
The Board of Directors for LegacySM announced it will continue efforts to preserve tobacco funds in Ohio, by taking the battle to the Supreme Court of Ohio. "We never anticipated being involved in such a protracted legal dispute regarding these funds," said Dr. Benjamin K. Chu, the foundation's Board Chair. "However, when we were asked to join the fight to safeguard these monies for their intended purpose, we considered it a moral imperative and still do.
read full story
Ohio tobacco settlement history



Cost-Effective Options to Stop Smoking in the New Year
The costs associated with smoking cessation can sometimes provide their own psychological barrier to quitting. Studies indicate, at any one time, at least one-third of smokers want to quit, especially around this time of year, when New Year’s resolutions are still fresh. Yet, sorting through the options for quitting can be daunting and sometimes expensive. However, no matter what you spend, it will probably never add up to more than the cost of continuing to smoke.
read full story



Reduced Public Smoking: Top 10 Medical Advances of the Decade
There is no national smoking ban in the United States. However, 27 states and the District of Columbia have enacted restrictions, including seven states that banned smoking in bars and casinos in recent years. In a report issued last October, the Institute of Medicine said those public smoking bans have cut exposure to secondhand smoke, which, in turn, has contributed to a reduction in heart attacks and death from heart disease.
read full story



1-800-QUIT-NOW Stats Available
Monthly call statistics from each state to 1-800-QUIT-NOW for the period November 9, 2004 through December 31, 2009 are now available.
view call statistics



New National Non-Smoking Week Web Site Launched
The Canadian Council for Tobacco Control (CCTC) invites you to visit the newly redesigned National Non-Smoking Week Web site. The new site provides details about the 2010 campaign; information about previous campaigns; and a quit help section that includes provincial 1-800 quit line numbers, quit-sites, and mobile quit support.

CCTC is also excited to unveil two real-time counters on its Web site, developed for the CCTC by Worldometers. One counter tracks the number of cigarettes consumed by Canadians while the other tabulates the number of deaths caused by smoking. Each counter is based on an algorithm that processes the latest and most accurate statistical data available.



Federal Court Deals Blow to Regulation of E-Cigarettes
Matthew L. Myers, President, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, responds to a recent federal ruling prohibiting the FDA from regulating e-cigarettes as drugs or medical devices. Key opposition to the ruling include: no credible scientific evidence that these products are safe for human consumption or that they are effective at helping smokers or other tobacco users quit; the risk of deterring current smokers from quitting by providing an alternative source of nicotine in places where smoking is not allowed; and these products could serve as a pathway to nicotine addiction for children, leading them to smoke cigarettes and use other tobacco products.
review the ruling
read full response



Break Free Alliance Publishes Paper on Tobacco Tax Increase and Low SES Population
The Break Free Alliance recently published a position paper on tobacco tax increases and the low SES population. Recommendations in the paper include: tobacco tax increases should be supported, as these tax increases deter youth from starting and encourage some adults to quit; tax increases should be coupled with appropriate cessation resources tailored to low SES subgroups; and advocates should continue to work on strategies to change the social norm and acceptance of tobacco use.
read position paper



American Lung Association Report Card
The American Lung Association has released its State of Tobacco Control 2009 report, which grades the strength of federal and state laws to protect citizens from tobacco-caused illnesses. These illnesses are now at the heart of America's chronic disease crisis.
view report




Research


Randomized Trial: Quitline Specialist Training in Gain-Framed vs Standard-Care Messages for Smoking Cessation
Toll BA, Martino S, Latimer A, Salovey P, O’Malley S, Carlin-Menter S, Hopkins J, Wu R, Celestino P, Cummings KM. Journal of the National Cancer Institute Advance Access published online on January 7, 2010

This study examined whether counseling messages that present benefits of quitting (gain-framed message) are more persuasive than standard care messages: those presenting both costs of smoking (loss-framed) and benefits of quitting. Smokers who called the New York State Smokers’ Quitline were exposed to either gain-framed or standard-care messages, and all received NRT if medically eligible. Follow-up was done at two weeks and three months. Gain-framed counseling was associated with statistically significantly higher quit rates than standard-care at two weeks but not at the three month follow-up. The authors conclude it is feasible to train quitline specialists to provide gain-framed counseling with good fidelity, and gain-framed messages appear to be somewhat more persuasive than standard-care messages in promoting early success in quitting.



A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial of 5 Smoking Cessation Pharmacotherapies
Piper ME, Smith SS, Schlam TR, Fiore MC, Jorenby DE, Fraser D, Baker TB.Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2009 Nov;66(11):1253-62.

This study examined the relative effectiveness of five smoking cessation medication interventions through randomization to one of six treatment conditions: nicotine lozenge, nicotine patch, sustained-release bupropion, nicotine patch plus nicotine lozenge, bupropion plus nicotine lozenge, or placebo. In addition, all participants received six individual counseling sessions. The study found all medications and medication combinations differed from placebo when examined without protection for multiple comparisons (odds ratios 1.63 – 2.34). With such protection, only the nicotine patch plus nicotine lozenge (odds ratio, 2.34, P=.001) produced significantly higher quit rates at six-month post-quit than placebo. The authors conclude that while the nicotine lozenge, bupropion, and bupropion plus lozenge produced effects that were comparable with those reported in the literature, the nicotine patch plus nicotine lozenge produced the greatest benefit relative to placebo for smoking cessation.



Smoking, stigma and tobacco ‘denormalization’: Further reflections on the use of stigma as a public health tool. A commentary on Social Science & Medicine's Stigma, Prejudice, Discrimination and Health Special Issue (67: 3)
Bell K, Salmon A, Bowers M, Bell J, McCullough L. Social Science & Medicine, available online 4 January 2010.

This commentary addresses the question of whether stigmatizing smoking may promote public health. Some have argued that "denormalization” strategies can effectively reduce the prevalence of smoking behaviors linked to tobacco-related death and disease. However, the authors suggest that stigmatizing smoking is likely to worsen health-related inequalities by limiting smokers’ (especially disadvantaged smokers’) access to healthcare and dampening smoking cessation efforts in primary care settings.



Reduced incidence of acute myocardial infarction in the first year after implementation of a public smoking ban in Graubuenden, Switzerland
Trachsel LD, Kuhn MU, Reinhart WH, Schulzki T, Bonetti PO.
Swiss Medical Weekly. 7. January 2010. [Epub ahead of print]

This study examined whether implementation of a smoking ban in public buildings in Graubuenden, Switzerland was followed by a decrease in the incidence of acute myocardial infarction (AMI). Virtually all patients experiencing an AMI in the Canton of Graubuended are transferred to the study hospital due to its possession of the only cardiac catherization laboratory in the area. The findings indicated a 22% reduction in incidence of AMI within the first year of enactment of the new regulation. These findings support other similar studies in other European countries and various regions of the US and Canada.
read full study



Effect of Medicaid Coverage of Tobacco-Dependence Treatments on Smoking Cessation
Liu F. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health Dec. 2009;6(12):3143-3155.

This study examined the relationship between Medicaid coverage of cessation products and successful quitting. While smoking cessation medications (NRT and prescription medications) have been proven to double quit rates compared to placebo, the high cost of these medications might create a financial barrier to use of these products for low-income smokers. The study findings indicate Medicaid coverage of cessation products is linked to higher quit rates among women aged 18-44.




Announcements


2010 SRNT Annual Meeting
February 24–27, 2010 in Baltimore, MD
more information



Society for Behavioral Medicine 2010 Conference
April 7–10, 2010 in Seattle, WA
more information



Promising Practices: Achieving Health and Social Equity in Tobacco Control
April 27–28, 2010 in New Orleans, LA
more information



11th International Congress of Behavioral Medicine Conference and Call for Abstracts
Translational Behavioral Research: A Global Challenge
August 4–7, 2010 in Washington, D.C.
more information



National Association of Local Boards of Health (NALBOH) 18th Annual Conference and Call for Abstracts
August 5–7, 2010 in Omaha, NE
more information



Seventh National Conference on Quality Health Care for Culturally Diverse Populations
October 18–21, 2010 in Baltimore, MD
more information



ClearWay MinnesotaSM Seeks Post-Doctoral Associate in Tobacco Control
ClearWay Minnesota is an independent non-profit organization serving Minnesota through research grant-making, surveillance, cessation services, and statewide outreach through media campaigns and community capacity building. We are seeking applications for a Post-Doctoral Associate to join our existing research team.

This position provides an opportunity for new researchers interested in tobacco control to have direct and applied experience. This position will provide an opportunity to be involved in a variety of existing surveillance, research, and evaluation projects.
view job posting



University of Texas Tenured/Tenure-Track Faculty Position
The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Department of Behavioral Science, is accepting applications for an open rank tenured or tenure-track scholar in any area of cancer prevention, control, psycho-oncology, and related behaviors. Strong preference will be given to applicants whose expertise lies in dietary modification and energy balance.
view job posting



FDA Seeks Associate Director, Office of Science (CTP)
Become a part of the Department touching the lives of every American! At the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) you can give back to your community, state, and country by making a difference in the lives of Americans everywhere. Join HHS and help to make our world healthier, safer, and better for all Americans. This Position is located in the Center for Tobacco Products, Office of Science within the Food and Drug Administration in Rockville, MD.
view job posting



Opportunity for Travel Scholarship to Increase SRNT Membership Diversity
The Tobacco-Related Health Disparities Committee of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco (SRNT) has established as one of its goals to increase the diversity of its membership. Therefore, SRNT is committed to increasing the diversity of researchers who help to stimulate and generate new knowledge concerning nicotine in all its manifestations—from the molecular to the societal level. The scholarship program is a partnership between the American Legacy Foundation, the National Cancer Institute, the California Tobacco-Related Disease Research Program, and the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco; it is administered by the Tobacco-Related Health Disparities Committee of SRNT.
more information


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