Newfoundland and Labrador

Smoking cessation in cancer care

Access to smoking cessation supports in cancer care settings in 2022-23

  • The four regional cancer centres and all other cancer care settings in Newfoundland and Labrador offer people with cancer support to quit smoking, including culturally appropriate supports for First Nations, Inuit and Métis with cancer.
  • People newly diagnosed with cancer are asked about their commercial tobacco use. Using an opt-out approach, people who smoke are provided with point-of-care smoking cessation supports. A multi-disciplinary team of Pharmacists, Nurse Practitioners and General Practitioners in Oncology provides clinical smoking cessation counselling at cancer centres or by telephone. People with cancer also receive follow-up support and referrals to the provincial quitline, Smokers’ Helpline.
  • People with cancer are offered free smoking cessation medications at the point-of-care.

Smoking cessation in cancer care implementation level in 2022-23: GOLD

Quality dimension Implementation criteria met Level
Behavioural counselling Offers 3A (Ask, Advise, Act) or 5A (Ask, Advise, Assess, Assist, Arrange) model with an opt-out approach SILVER
Pharmacotherapy Offers free varenicline, bupropion and/or nicotine replacement therapy GOLD
Person-centred Engages people with cancer in program planning, gathers people’s feedback, and evaluates outcomes for people with cancer GOLD
Culturally competent Offers staff cultural competency training and resources for people with cancer  SILVER
Partnership Works with a multi-disciplinary team and community partners  SILVER
Indicator measurement and reporting Collects and reports on adoption, reach, uptake and outcome data  GOLD

Smoking Cessation Action Framework Implementation Checklist

Impact of funded project (2018-21)

  • Building on a previously funded planning project and subsequent pilot program, funding and support enabled the Provincial Cancer Care Program at Eastern Health to expand smoking cessation services for people with cancer and establish smoking cessation as a standard of care in ambulatory oncology.
  • The program expanded access to point-of-care behavioural counselling and free smoking cessation medications to all four regional cancer centres and peripheral cancer care sites. This expansion was facilitated by pandemic, which necessitated the shift to from in-person and Telehealth services to telephone counselling and mail-out medications. This shift reduced barriers to quitting and increased the reach and acceptance of the cessation program.
  • Efforts were made to improve access to culturally appropriate care for Indigenous people with cancer, through cultural competency training, connections with Indigenous Navigators and translation of resources for people with cancer.
  • In 2022, after the project funding ended, Eastern Health began funding a part-time smoking cessation in ambulatory oncology coordinator position and continued to fund the provision of free smoking cessation medications for people with cancer.