During 2001 and 2002, project staff at Brandeis University, Waltham, Mass., developed a system for treating tobacco use and dependence as a chronic disease, along with a planning guide for its implementation in a clinical setting.
The system of care incorporates current tobacco intervention practice guidelines into a chronic care model designed to improve the treatment of a range of chronic illnesses.
Project staff published Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence as a Chronic Disease: A Planning Guide for Practice Sites in Developing an Office-Based System of Care. The planning guide includes:
- A tool for clinical practice sites to assess their current system of care.
- Suggestions for organizing both internal and external care systems to sustain continuing treatment of tobacco use and dependence.
Implementation of the planning guide at the Urban Medical Group, a five-physician practice, in Boston, revealed that the chronic care model works well with tobacco use treatment.