University of Ottawa Heart Institute

University of Ottawa Heart Institute
Vancouver Coastal Health Authority

Vancouver Coastal Health Authority

January 21, 2014 11:00 ET

National Non-Smoking Week: Ottawa Heart Institute Smoking Cessation Model Reaches 120,000 Smokers Across Canada, Shows Great Success in British Columbia

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Jan. 21, 2014) - The Ottawa Model for Smoking Cessation (OMSC), created and powered by the University of Ottawa Heart Institute (UOHI), has reached an impressive 120,000 smokers across Canada since 2006. British Columbia is among the provinces that have successfully implemented the program through the efforts of Vancouver Coastal Health.

In 2002, the Ottawa Heart Institute smoking cessation experts developed the Ottawa Model for Smoking Cessation - an institutional program that systematically identifies, provides treatment, and offers follow-up to patients who smoke. Implementation of the OMSC led to an absolute 15% increase in long-term quit rates at the Institute (from 29% to 44% at 6 months) and an 11% increase in more general hospital populations (from 18% to 29% at 6 months). In 2006, UOHI began to assist other inpatient, outpatient and primary care settings to implement the OMSC. Today, healthcare settings in 9 provinces across Canada have implemented the OMSC.

" The success behind the Ottawa Model for Smoking Cessation is truly found in the determined teams across Canada that are providing personalized support to smokers who are trying to quit," said Dr. Andrew Pipe, Chief of the Division of Prevention and Rehabilitation at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute. "With over 180 sites in Canada, and by continuing to work closely together, we hope to keep supporting more smokers in the years to come."

"Tobacco use is the number one cause of preventable death and disease in Canada, bar none, and the Ottawa Model for Smoking Cessation gives us a systems-wide approach which provides doctors, nurses, nutritionists and respiratory therapists an evidence-based standard of care for addressing patients' tobacco use. It also gives staff the necessary tools to support their patients in living healthier lives," said Ely Weston, Nurse and Program Manager at Vancouver Coastal Health.

The OMSC is now being implemented in one of the poorest neighborhoods in Canada, the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver. At one local addiction treatment centre services mostly focused on alcohol and hard drugs, though almost all of the clients use tobacco. Once the model was implemented, clinicians were pleased with its success since many clients actually wanted to address tobacco use along with their other addictions.

Brendan Behan, Chronic Disease Management Nurse at Vancouver Coastal Health, in Powell River stated, "I just got a big hug from a lady who quit smoking last year! She said "You and your program saved my life!" Nice."

The OMSC team is comprised of tobacco treatment specialists, outreach facilitators, knowledge transfer coordinators, data analysts and evaluation specialists. As a team, they work towards improving institutional policies, systems, and practices to ensure the systematic identification, treatment, and follow-up of tobacco users in the healthcare organizations with whom they work.

VCH is responsible for the delivery of $3 billion in community, hospital and residential care to more than one million people in communities including Richmond, Vancouver, the North Shore, Sunshine Coast, Sea to Sky corridor, Powell River, Bella Bella and Bella Coola.

Contact Information

  • Vincent Lamontagne
    Senior Manager, Public Affairs
    University of Ottawa Heart Institute

    Tiffany Akins
    Communications Leader
    Vancouver Coastal Health
    Cell: 604-319-7530