For parents who smoke, visits with the pediatrician may be their most frequent – or only – access to the health care system. A study in the July 2013 issue of Pediatrics, “Implementation of Parental Tobacco Control Intervention in Pediatric Practice,” (published online June 24), tests whether pediatric practices can successful help parents quit smoking. Researchers recruited 20 pediatric practices that participate in the Pediatric Research in Office Settings research network of the American Academy of Pediatrics and divided them into two groups. Those in the intervention group were encouraged to conduct routine screening for parental tobacco use, offer motivational messaging to parents, suggest nicotine patches or gum, and offer enrollment in a free state quitline. Compared to the control group, practices in the intervention group were 12 times more likely to deliver tobacco cessation support compared to practices in the control group. The authors conclude that the study shows that intervention for tobacco use cessation for parents can be successfully implemented as part of routine child health care.
The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 60,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For more information, visit www.aap.org.