December 6, 2018
We hope you enjoy this monthly newsletter fr om The Education & Training Program at the Center for Tobacco Independence.
What's the Research?
The impact of Prenatal Tobacco Screening on Clinical Relationships

It can be difficult to know the best way to treat pregnant women who use tobacco. The stakes are high, and everyone wants what is best for the baby. Yet many low-income pregnant women deny using tobacco. If a clinician chooses to use urine-testing to screen for tobacco, what impact does this have on the relationship with the pregnant patient?

Researchers conducted individual interviews and focus groups with pregnant and postpartum women. They sought to evaluate patient and clinician perspectives about conducting tobacco screening during prenatal care. In particular, they focused on the impact of testing on clinical relationships and the potential for tobacco cessation.

The analysis found that despite having reservations, low-income patients had a surprisingly favorable view of using urine testing to promote smoking cessation during pregnancy. Researchers pointed out that this testing could increase the availability of tobacco treatment resources to women who do not disclose their tobacco use to clinicians.

To access the article, CLICK HERE .

Article citation: Bobb-Semple A, et al . Prenatal Point-of-Care Tobacco Screening and Clinical Relationships, Ann Fam Med 2018;16:507-514.
New FDA Regulations on Flavored Nicotine Products

Startling statistics about vaping have prompted new federal action by the US Food and Drug Administration. Vaping increased nearly 80% among high schoolers and 50% among middle schoolers since last year. On November 15, 2018, the FDA proposed new measures against flavored nicotine products.

The changes are meant to protect youth by requiring that all flavored electronic nicotine delivery products (ENDS) be sold in age-restricted, in-person locations and, if sold online, under heightened practices for age verification.

The regulations won’t include tobacco, mint and menthol flavors or non-flavored products, because these tend not to appeal as much to youth. Also, the changes to internet sales will not affect Maine, where people are already prohibited from selling these products online, including through platforms such as eBay and Craigslist.

FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, M.D., proposed additional bans on regular menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars, which won't take effect right away. Regarding menthol cigarettes, Gottlieb said: “More than half (54 percent) of youth smokers ages 12-17 use menthol cigarettes, compared to less than one-third of smokers ages 35 and older. Prevalence of menthol use is even higher among African-American youth, with data showing that seven out of 10 African-American youth smokers select menthol cigarettes.”

To read the full Commissioner statement, CLICK HERE.
Selected Resource
Infographic on Youth E-Cigarette Use

As stated above, there has been an extreme rise in use of e-cigarettes among youth. When working with parents and kids, it can be helpful to have a resource that explains the implications of this in simplified terms. This infographic from the CDC is available to download and print.

To access: CLICK HERE or on the image.
Increased Referrals to the
Maine Tobacco HelpLine

The work of the Maine Tobacco HelpLine was featured in MaineHealth’s 2018 Annual Report. Here is an excerpt highlighting the recent increase in referrals to the HelpLine:

In 2016, MaineHealth set a goal to increase the number of patients referred to the MaineTobacco HelpLine.

Recognizing the key role providers play in encouraging patients to quit, all MaineHealth primary care practices that are on Epic (our system’s shared electronic health record) were trained in 2017-18 on how to make a referral to the HelpLine using Epic — a process that takes as little as 60 seconds.

In the first year after the training, these practices referred twice as many patients to the HelpLine compared to the previous year, and 65 percent more of their patients enrolled in treatment. At Lincoln Medical Partners practices alone, 299 patients were referred to the HelpLine, a 200 percent increase over FY17.

Read more HERE (see page 18).

For all those who are making regular referrals, we thank you! You are contributing to the improving health of Mainers.
To access a digital brochure for the
2018-2019 training season

For a complete list of this year's webinars,  CLICK HERE

For more information about the Education & Training Program, visit:

MaineHealth Center for Tobacco Independence (CTI)
Tobacco Treatment Education and Training Program
CTI provides education and training on evidence-based tobacco treatment to healthcare and behavioral health professionals in Maine on behalf of the Maine CDC, DHHS. Our goal is to improve access to high quality, best practice tobacco treatment and create a network of tobacco treatment specialists across the state.