Proactive Outreach for Smokers in VA Mental Health
Funded by: VA Health Services Research and Development
Project dates: October 2013 - June 2017
Principal Investigator: Sherman, Scott
Principal Investigator: Fu S

Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death in the United States and contributes up to 24% of all VA healthcare costs. Rates of tobacco use are particularly high among veterans diagnosed with mental illness. Numerous barriers exist for tobacco cessation among mental health patients, including high nicotine dependency, low rates of follow through for referrals, and limited availability of tobacco treatment tailored to their needs. The study is using the electronic medical record system to identify smokers receiving mental health care and proactively reaching out to engage them in treatment. It is comparing the reach and efficacy of a proactive outreach telephone-based tobacco cessation (PRO) program to usual care (UC) advice and referral to local VA and community tobacco cessation resources. The approach developed in this study could be generalized to other behaviors, and provides a novel method to improve the health of an entire population of patients.

Abstract on U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Website
Related Publications
Danan ER, Sherman SE, Clothier BA, Burgess DJ, Pinsker EA, Joseph AM, Noorbaloochi S, Fu SS (2019).
Smoking cessation among female and male veterans before and after a randomized trial of proactive outreach
Womens Health Issues, 29 (Suppl 1), S15-S23. doi: 10.1016/j.whi.2019.04.001. PMCID: PMC8269751.

Rogers ES, Fu SS, Krebs P, Noorbaloochi S, Nugent SM, Gravely A, Sherman SE (2018).
Proactive tobacco treatment for smokers using Veterans Administration mental health clinics
American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 54 (5), 620-629. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2018.02.011.

Japuntich SJ, Sherman SE, Joseph AM, Clothier B, Noorbaloochi S, Danan E, Burgess D, Rogers E, Fu SS (2018).
Proactive tobacco treatment for individuals with and without a mental health diagnosis: Secondary analysis of a pragmatic randomized controlled trial
Addictive Behaviors, 76, 15-19. doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2017.07.024. PMCID: PMC5614843.

Danan ER, Joseph AM, Sherman SE, Burgess DJ, Noorbaloochi S, Clothier B, Japuntich SJ, Taylor BC, Fu SS (2016).
Does motivation matter? Analysis of a randomized trial of proactive outreach to VA smokers
Journal of General Internal Medicine, 31 (8), 878-887. doi: 10.1007/s11606-016-3687-1. PMCID: PMC4945562.

Fu SS, van Ryn M, Sherman SE, Burgess DJ, Noorbaloochi S, Clothier B, Taylor BC, Schlede CM, Burke RS, Joseph AM (2014).
Proactive tobacco treatment and population-level cessation: A pragmatic randomized clinical trial
JAMA Internal Medicine, 174 (5), 671-677. doi: 10.1001/jamainternmed.2014.177.