The treatment of tobacco dependence1 is critical to health and should be foundational to excellence in health care delivery. The Surgeon General’s 2020 report identified low-cost interventions that are effective in helping people quit smoking when used in both outpatient and inpatient clinical settings and indicated that the benefits of quitting for health and well-being are substantial.2 Almost 500 000 Americans die annually from tobacco use, and 16 million have serious tobacco-induced chronic diseases.2 This results in $170 billion in health care costs, including $110 billion from hospitalizations.3 People who use evidence-based cessation interventions are more likely to quit smoking than those who do not.2 Too few of the 34 million Americans who are addicted to nicotine receive assistance from health care professionals.2 Many more lives could be saved if universal treatment of tobacco dependence were implemented across all health care systems, both during hospitalization and after discharge.1
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Sarna L, Fiore MC, Schroeder SA. Tobacco Dependence Treatment Is Critical to Excellence in Health Care. JAMA Intern Med. 2020;180(11):1413–1414. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2020.3972
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