Preoperative visits are an exceptional opportunity to encourage smoking cessation, as studies demonstrate the experience of scheduling elective surgery produces an actionable incentive to quit. However, studies suggest surgeons do not regularly assess smoking behavior or offer cessation therapies. Clinical decision support (CDS) is a system in which providers are presented with clinically integrated tools to enhance decision-making.
A CDS tool was designed to facilitate treatment referrals for smoking cessation services among patients seeking elective surgery. Two clinics were selected: the plastic and vascular surgeries. The study objectives were to assess the utilization rate and effectiveness of this system.
No smoking cessation referrals had been submitted by the plastic surgery or vascular surgery clinics in the year before CDS tool implementation. Providers at the plastic surgery clinic utilized the CDS tool in 95.0% (191 of 201) eligible patient encounters. Of these patients, 16.3% were identified as active smokers, and 16.1% of these smokers accepted treatment referrals. Providers at the vascular surgery clinic utilized the CDS tool in 50.3% (98 of 195) eligible patient encounters. Of these patients, 10.2% were identified as active smokers, and 30.0% of these smokers accepted treatment referrals.
The CDS tool improved the incidence of smoking cessation referrals in two surgical clinics from pretest baselines and achieved satisfactory utilization rates. This report demonstrates the feasibility of CDS tools to actualize the preoperative visit as an opportunity to promote smoking cessation.

© 2021 Stonesifer C. et al.
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References

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