Ask, Advise, Refer: Promoting Pharmacy-based Referrals to Tobacco Quit-Lines

Professor of Clinical Pharmacy

This project aims to estimate the relative impact of two intervention approaches for generating community pharmacy-based referrals to tobacco cessation telephone quitlines. This study will apply a randomized design, using the community pharmacy as the unit of randomization, to estimate the impact of two approaches for engaging community pharmacy personnel in providing patient referrals to tobacco quitlines: (1) Minimal intervention: Pharmacies are provided, by mail, with printed quitline materials to be distributed by pharmacy personnel to patients who smoke. (2) Academic detailing: Pharmacy personnel receive, via brief on-site training, print materials that parallel the minimal intervention group, fax referral forms, and DVD demonstrations that model the referral procedures. Two types of referrals will be advocated and assessed for the intervention approaches. Passive referrals occur when a card or brochure designating the quitline telephone number is provided to the patient, and the patient then contacts the quitline at his or her convenience. Conversely, an active fax referral occurs when a patient provides his or her contact information on a form, which the pharmacy then faxes to the quitline, and the quitline contacts the patient directly. The minimal intervention group materials will promote passive referrals only. In contrast, the academic detailing group intervention will promote both active fax referrals (for patients who are ready to quit) and passive referrals (for patients who are not ready to quit).