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Tobacco Cessation Patient Tools

Telephone quitline: 1-855-QUIT-VET

Proactive telephone quitlines are an effective tobacco cessation intervention and increase abstinence rates. Quitlines are also very practical in that Veterans can access quitline services from any location and on their own schedule.

1-855-QUIT-VET is a national, proactive, toll-free counseling quitline. 1-855-QUIT-VET is available at no cost to all Veterans receiving their health care through VA.

Quit VET provides a national standard of care to Veterans across the United States through counselors who:

  • Understand the VA population and VA health care services offered to Veterans
  • Can connect Veterans in emotional distress to counselors at the Veterans Crisis Line
  • Refer callers to their VA health care provider for smoking cessation medications and other health care concerns (Quit VET counselors cannot prescribe smoking cessation medications)

VA providers are encouraged to refer their patients to 1-855-QUIT-VET for Veteran-specific services before sending Veterans to other state or national quitlines.

SmokefreeVET text messaging program

Tobacco cessation text messaging programs effectively increase long-term abstinence rates. The vast majority of Veterans (84%) who receive VA care have cell phones, making these mobile devices a key resource for health information.

SmokefreeVET is VA's first health promotion text messaging program for Veterans. This Veteran-focused text messaging program provides up to eight weeks of supportive and encouraging texts to Veterans attempting to quit smoking. Text messages are available in both English and Spanish.

1-855-QUIT-VET and SmokefreeVET are collaborations between VA and the National Cancer Institute.

Stay Quit Coach mobile app

Stay Quit Coach is intended as a treatment companion for a patient working on smoking cessation with a health care provider. It can be used as a relapse prevention tool or stand-alone app.

It includes interactive tools to help users cope with urges to smoke, motivational messages, medication reminders, progress tracking, and links to get support.

Sources

  • Fiore, M. C., Jaén, C. R., Baker, T. B., Bailey, W. C., Benowitz, N. L., Curry, S. J., Dorfman, S. F., Froelicher, E. S., Goldstein, M. G., Healton, C. G., Henderson, P. Nez, Heyman, R. B., Koh, H. K., Kottke, T. E., Lando, H. A., Mecklenburg, R. E., Mermelstein, R. J., Mullen, P. D., Orleans, C. Tracy, Robinson, L., Stitzer, M. L., Tommasello, A. C., Villejo, L., & Wewers, M. E. (2008, May). Treating tobacco use and dependence: 2008 update. Clinical practice guideline. Rockville, MD: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service. Accessed at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK63952/
  • Houston, T.K., Volkman, J.E., Feng, H., Nazi, K.M., Shimada, S.L., & Fox, S. (2013). Veteran internet use and engagement with health information online. Military Medicine, 178(4), 394-400.
  • Whittaker, R., McRobbie, H., Bullen, C., Borland, R., Rodgers, A., & Gu, Y. (2012, Nov. 14). Mobile phone-based interventions for smoking cessation. Cochrane Database Systematic Reviews.