Are you planning to quit smoking or the use of another tobacco product? Congratulations on your decision and best wishes in your journey. Most find quitting difficult but one would be hard-pressed to find someone who regrets quitting smoking for good. The benefits of quitting begin within the first hour and only increase as the hours and days pass.
Many people trying to quit have tried before. It is not uncommon to enjoy success for a period of time and have something, perhaps a stressful life event, result in a relapse to smoking. Think about what has worked in the past. More importantly, think about what did not work. Consider your triggers and make a plan for cravings. Get help and support, talk to your doctor about medication options. Be kind to yourself and know that quitting is a sprint and not a race.
Ohio Department of Health’s Tobacco Program offers several different resources to help you, or someone you know, begin a new tobacco-free life.
Ohio Tobacco Quit Line
Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) and speak with an intake specialist to discuss assistance to help you quit tobacco.
See the Ohio Tobacco Quit Line brochure here.
The Ohio Tobacco Quit Line provides personal quit coaching and telephone counseling free of charge to ALL Ohioans, regardless of insurance status or income. There is also a special protocol for pregnant women (learn more here). Nicotine patches, gum, or lozenges are provided for up to eight weeks at no charge to eligible participants.
The Ohio QuitLogix Online Tobacco Use Cessation Program is available to all Ohioans of age 18 or older (or younger with parental permission).
Employees and covered family members of companies and health plan organizations that are members of the Ohio Tobacco Collaborative are eligible to participate in the Ohio Tobacco Quit Line. More than 5.4 million Ohioans have access to the Ohio Quit Line through the Ohio Tobacco Collaborative.
Health threats to children exposed to tobacco smoke are serious. For unborn children, the health threats are severe. For this reason and many others, a smoke-free household is the best way to ensure a healthy family.
Pregnant women are eligible to receive free help to quit smoking through the Ohio Tobacco Quit Line Pregnancy Program. Quitting smoking is best for you and your baby.
Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669): a free program to help pregnant women quit smoking.
The program offers special rewards:
A $5 rewards card after your first call
A $5 rewards card per completed call during pregnancy (up to five calls or $25)
A $10 rewards card per completed call after childbirth (up to four calls or $40)
Other benefits: text messaging options nicotine replacement therapy (if applicable and approved) online counseling and individual, personalized telephone counseling
Most importantly: a healthy, tobacco-free future for you and your baby!
Risks to Babies of Smoking Mothers:
Smoking during pregnancy remains one of the most common preventable causes of infant morbidity and mortality.1
Unborn babies are deprived of oxygen and nutrition because the placenta carrying these from the baby to the mother is adversely affected by smoking.
Children born of smoking mothers are often low birth weight (less than 5 ½ pounds) and are two to three times more likely to die of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
Breastmilk from smoking mothers passes toxic effects to nursing babies.
Children exposed to secondhand smoke are at risk for more frequent colds, asthma, and bronchitis.
1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Health Consequences of Smoking: A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 2004.
2. Ohio Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System, Ohio Department of Health
3. Fiore MC, Laen CR, Baker TB, et al. Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence: 2006 Update. Clinical Practice Guideline. Rockville, MD U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Public Health Service. May 2008.
For Ohio Employers: Affordable Care Act and Tobacco Cessation
Tobacco cessation coverage is the single most cost-effective health benefit an employer can provide to its employees. The return on investment to employers is positive in the first year due to productivity gains and provides positive medical cost savings in the second year.
Smoking and smoking-related illnesses cost employers $2,312 per smoking employee in lost productivity and $2,132 per employee in excess medical expenses.
The federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) includes tobacco coverage provisions that will ultimately affect all employers in Ohio. This document addresses coverage requirements for employers who offer either insured or self-insured health benefits to their employees.
For plan years beginning on or after September 23, 2010, employers must offer their employees tobacco cessation benefits with no cost-sharing requirements. This applies to both insured and self-insured employers; only grandfathered employers are exempt.
What to Cover: Baseline Benefit
Federal agencies and the Ohio Department of Insurance will consider a group health plan or health insurance issuer to be in compliance with the requirement to cover tobacco use counseling and interventions if the plan or issuer covers without cost-sharing:
- Screening for tobacco use; For those who use tobacco products, at least two tobacco cessation attempts per year.
For this purpose, covering a cessation attempt includes coverage for:
- Four tobacco cessation counseling sessions of at least 10 minutes each (including telephone counseling, group counseling and individual counseling) without prior authorization
- All Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved tobacco cessation medications (including both prescription and over-the-counter medications) for a 90-day treatment regimen when prescribed by a health care provider without prior authorization.
Other than federal mandates, why provide tobacco cessation coverage to employees?
If cessation benefits are structured well, an employer should generate a positive return on investment early in the second year of providing the benefit.
The baseline benefit description above reflects coverage that is in compliance with PPACA and is likely to maximize the odds of a successful quit attempt and a fast return on investment for the employer.
Three Options for Coverage and How to Assess Effectiveness
1. If you work with a health plan or an Administrative Services Only (ASO) partner, determine if it has a plan-sponsored tobacco benefit or rider.
As you evaluate this coverage, consider:
- Level of coverage: Does it provide the baseline benefits described above?
- Does the price provide good value to the employer in terms of utilization and cost?
- Consider use-based pricing which incents the vendor to actively promote the benefit and minimizes the employer’s risk to just those who attempt to quit.
- If it is priced on a per member per month (pmpm) basis -- how does the plan promote the benefit and what kind of utilization has been historically achieved? If not actively promoted and tracked, the outlay can be very high relative to the number of people who use the benefit.
- Can the plan report the percentage of eligible employees that are participating in the cessation program and an externally validated 6-month or 1-year quit rate?
- If not, how can the employer ensure value for the money expended?
2. Consider the public-private partnership Ohio Tobacco Collaborative as part of your benefit. Ohio has a unique public-private partnership (the Ohio Tobacco Collaborative) that leverages the buying power of employers, health plans, the Ohio Quit Line and the Ohio Department of Health.
Through it, purchasers, health plans and other entities can access nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) at cost and greatly discounted telephonic counseling services.
- Quit Line telephonic coaching - $168 per member who calls the Quit Line, for five outbound coaching sessions and unlimited support calls.
- Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) - $54 for four weeks of patch(21mg, 14 mg, or 7mg), or $60 for four weeks of gum (2mg or 4mg), or $64 for four weeks of lozenges (2mg or 4mg) shipped to the participant's home.
The Ohio Tobacco Quit Line, run by National Jewish Health, reports six-month quit rates of 40 percent for Ohio participants.
Although priced on a per use basis, the rates negotiated translate to approximately .20 pmpm. Because it provides access to the nationally recognized 1-800-Quit-Now phone number, it is easy for both employees and providers to use, with minimal implementation required.
If you’re interested in the Ohio Tobacco Collaborative, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
3. Consider an independent contractual relationship with a cessation vendor. There are other cessation vendors that take a variety of different approaches to cessation services for private health plans, employers and other state quitlines. Any vendor analysis should include the three factors identified above:
- level of coverage
- validated outcomes data.
Teaming With Healthcare Providers –Their Important Role in Tobacco Cessation
In 2000, the U.S. Public Health Service released updated clinical practice guidelines recommending that physicians and healthcare organizations implement the 5A’s Treatment Model with their patients who use tobacco. Healthcare providers are aware of each patient’s health issues and can advise them about the risks of using tobacco or being exposed to smoking.
The Ohio Department of Health Tobacco Use Prevention and Cessation Program provides guidance for implementation of the 5A’s method, along with handout materials for their patients who are at risk.
The 5A's Method for Tobacco Intervention
The 5A's method includes:
1. Asking a patient about his/her tobacco use
2. Advising him/her to quit
3. Assessing the patient’s willingness to make an attempt to quit
4. Assisting him/her with counseling or pharmacotherapy
5. Arranging a follow-up appointment or referral
The Ohio Department of Health has implemented the “5 A's” in 14 Child and Family Health Services Perinatal Direct Care clinics and 13 Women, Infant, and Children (WIC) projects.
In partnership with the Ohio Department of Medicaid, the Ohio Department of Health created the following chart to assist providers in efforts to seek reimbursement for tobacco cessation treatment delivered to Medicaid recipients:
If you have questions, contact us at 614-728-2429 or e-mail us at email@example.com
Ohio Tobacco Collaborative
The Ohio Tobacco Collaborative is a unique public-private partnership that provides commercial carriers, employers, and third-party administrators with access to tobacco cessation services at rates typically reserved for public health.
Employees of these companies (and covered family members), carriers or third-party administrators are eligible to receive services from the Ohio Tobacco Quit Line, which provides one-on-one tobacco cessation telephone counseling and nicotine replacement therapy.
As of February 2016, nearly 4 million Ohioans have access to the Ohio Tobacco Quit Line because their employer or health plan joined the Ohio Tobacco Collaborative. The Ohio Tobacco Quit Line also continues to serve pregnant women, the uninsured, and Medicaid callers not enrolled in a managed care plan. All other callers are referred back to their health plan or employer for the cessation services that the plan or employer are required to provide under federal law.
For more information about joining the Ohio Tobacco Collaborative, please contact the Ohio Department of Health's Tobacco Use Prevention & Cessation Program at 614-728-2429 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to the Ohio Tobacco Quit Line and the QuitLogix online cessation program, a number of local programs are available to Ohioans who want to quit tobacco use.
To gain a better picture of the amount and reach of tobacco cessation programs in the state of Ohio, the Ohio Department of Health (ODH), in conjunction with Strategic Research Group (SRG), conducted a survey of agencies offering tobacco cessation services.
This survey was conducted over the Spring and Summer of 2015 and the resulting data was used to develop a searchable database of tobacco cessation services, which is outlined below:
The database is searchable by the following variables:
County or counties served
Service(s) offered: Individual counseling, group counseling, telephonic counseling, and/or classes and workshops
Funding source(s): Insurance reimbursement, Medicaid, individual pay, a sliding fee based on income, and/or grant.
Population(s) served: All, uninsured, low income, WIC, pregnant women/families, youth, insured individuals, patients at a medical facility, health plan members, businesses, schools, veterans, and/or nonprofit agencies.
In addition to the items listed above, search results will include the following information:
Program elements: Treatment plan, healthy lifestyle component, medical component, education component, and/or incentive.
Is at least one counselor/instructor a certified Tobacco Treatment Specialist?
Agency Contact Information (if provided): Name, address, contact person name, contact person email, contact person phone number.
Notes and considerations:
Some information may be missing because it wasn’t collected or the respondent opted not to provide it.
Only those who gave explicit permission for their agency and service information to be shared on the ODH website and/or with the Ohio Quit Line are included in the database.