Tobacco Cessation

From Guide to YKHC Medical Practices

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YKHC is a completely Tobacco Free campus as of 2/5/2018.

Many of our patients use tobacco in various forms. Chewing tobacco is very popular here, especially smokeless tobacco. Tobacco is mixed with a spruce tree fungus called “punk ash”. The punk ash and tobacco mixed together is known as Iqmik. The punk ask allows the tobacco to enter the blood stream quickly which gives a nicotine rush almost instantly. This obviously makes it harder to quit.

Providers should ask patients about tobacco use at every visit and really encourage them to quit chewing and smoking.

We have an aggressive Nicotine/Tobacco Cessation Program at YKHC. The Nicotine Cessation office is physically located on the second floor of the main hospital. They can be reached at 543-6312.

To refer a patient, order a Refer to Nicotine Cessation.

  • If in Bethel
    • you can have the patient directly referred to the tobacco cessation office where they will be counseled and prescriptions for patches, gum, inhalers, or bupropion will be written if appropriate.
    • If you want to prescribe Chantix, please document that you asked the patient about depression to make sure this is a good choice for them.
    • You will be asked to sign proposed orders by the Nicotine Cessation staff for your panel of patients.

Feel free to prescribe any nicotine replacement the patients want, but encourage them to see the Nicotine Cessation providers to help them with support. The Nicotine Cessation providers can select the appropriate strength of nicotine replacement once they have counseled the patient.

  • If you are in the villages
    • your best bet is to use the Quit Line: 1- 888-842-7848.
      • This is a State of Alaska sponsored tobacco cessation program that can all be completed over the phone.
      • They will send out free patches or other nicotine products to someone who wants to quit.
    • You can also refer to Nicotine Cessation in Bethel and they will call the patient.