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Parental Tobacco Control in the Child Healthcare Setting

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Each year 40% of the worldapos;s children are exposed to tobacco smoke and 166,000 children die from that exposure annually. The 2006 and 2010 U.S. Surgeon General Reports concluded that there is no safe level of tobacco smoke exposure (TSE). The only way to completely protect children from the dangers of household TSE is to help all household members quit. Due to the many health concerns associated with children's TSE, parental tobacco control is a priority within the pediatric setting. Child healthcare clinicians are in a unique position to influence the smoking behaviors of parents, thereby improving the health of their patients. The Clinical and Community Effort Against Secondhand Smoke Exposure (CEASE) is a parental tobacco control intervention that uses an operational form of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service's (HHS) Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence Guideline in the context of the child's outpatient medical visit. The CEASE method includes three steps (Ask, Assist, Refer) that encompass the goals of the 5A's (Ask, Advise, Assess, Assist, Arrange) in a simplified format, allowing for brief, tailored cessation support for the person who smokes. This paper summarizes the research on the harms of TSE and explores how child healthcare clinicians can most effectively eliminate these health risks to children by implementing CEASE. Finally, we look at legislative initiatives that clinicians can support to help protect children from the harms of TSE.

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Keywords: Child healthcare clinicians; multi-unit housing; nicotine; parents; pediatrics; smoke-free; thirdhand smoke; tobacco smoke exposure

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2011-05-01

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  • Current Pediatric Reviews publishes frontier reviews on all the latest advances in pediatric medicine. The journal's aim is to publish the highest quality review articles dedicated to clinical research in the field. The journal is essential reading for all researchers and clinicians in pediatric medicine.
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