OHA and OU Children’s Hospital present at pediatrics conference

Posted on: 9/28/17

Mary Anne McCaffree, MD, neonatologist, OU Children’s Hospital, and Eric Finley, MPH, OHA HHPQ tobacco treatment coordinator, at the AAP 2017 Annual Meeting.
Eric Finley
, MPH, with the OHA Hospitals Helping Patients Quit initiative (HHPQ), and Mary Anne McCaffree, MD, neonatologist with the Children’s Hospital at OU Medical Center, presented a poster session at the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Annual Meeting in Chicago Sept. 16. This poster highlighted successes of a joint effort to integrate tobacco treatment best practices into the Children’s Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit as a standard treatment protocol for parents and other caregivers.   

The AAP Annual Meeting welcomes international pediatricians and pediatric health care professionals from across the U.S. AAP has 64,000 members and a mission to attain optimal physical, mental, and social health and well-being for all infants, children, adolescents and young adults.

The presentation highlighted efforts in the Children’s Hospital NICU to target the patient’s parents, guardians, or caregivers for tobacco cessation services. It demonstrates that effective tobacco counseling can be successfully integrated into a NICU setting, an environment not traditionally viewed as receptive to tobacco treatment services. Helping caregivers quit tobacco use reduces infant exposure to second and thirdhand smoke, which can complicate healing and recovery, post discharge. In the initial 14 months of this effort, more than 1,200 parents or other caregivers have been screened for tobacco use and nearly 120 tobacco users have been referred to the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline (OTH).

“This innovative approach to help caregivers quit tobacco use has been highly successful as over half of the parents or caregivers identified as tobacco users in the NICU at OU Children’s Hospital have taken proactive steps to quit by accepting follow-up cessation services from the OTH. We know that this results in higher quit rates for these parents and guardians and, as important, fewer sick babies being exposed to the hazards of second and thirdhand smoke once they leave the hospital,” said Joy Leuthard, OHA health improvement initiatives manager.  

HHPQ is funded through a grant from the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET). Since 2010, HHPQ has partnered with more than 50 hospitals and dozens of clinics, improving the health and quality of life for thousands of Oklahomans.

For information on how your hospital can participate in this initiative, contact Joy L. Leuthard, leuthard@okoha.com, (405) 427-9537.

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