Follow Us



Patients with psychiatric disorders and substance use disorders have smoking rates that are two to four times higher, and are likely to die 25 years earlier, than the general population. The Clinical Practice Guideline: Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence 2008 Update recommends that all smokers with psychiatric disorders be offered treatment to help them overcome their dependence on tobacco. Yet, less than 13% of psychiatrists offer smoking cessation counseling to these patients, leaving a ripe opportunity for other treatment team members to deliver interventions conveniently within the context of primary care settings. This activity will cover the 5 A’s for smoking cessation, motivational interviewing approaches, use of available medications to assist with cessation, and specific tactics for working with patients who have mental health and addictive disorders. Specific considerations will be shared for patients who have depression, anxiety, substance use disorders, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder. Handouts and downloadable tools are provided to further assist clinicians in their practice.

Access activity

A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that varenicline and nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) combined was more effective than varenicline alone. More than 400 adults were randomized to receive varenicline plus either a 15-mg nicotine patch or placebo patch. The combination therapy group achieved higher abstinence rates at 12 weeks (end of treatment) and at 6 months. Further studies are needed to assess long-term efficacy and safety. Read more about the study.