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A Comprehensive Approach to. Smoking Cessation in the Workplace. Start Living Healthier. Start Living Healthier. Smoking and Human Health Smoking – An Addiction to Nicotine Smoking & Productivity Why Should Employers Help Employees Stop Smoking?

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a comprehensive approach to

A Comprehensive Approach to

Smoking Cessation in the Workplace

Start Living Healthier

Smoking and Human Health

Smoking – An Addiction to Nicotine

Smoking & Productivity

Why Should Employers Help Employees Stop Smoking?

What Supports Can Employers Provide and What Supports are Ideal?

Start Living Healthier

background rationale
Background & Rationale

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background rationale1
Background & Rationale

Cessation therapy and counselling is the most cost effective health intervention that an employer can provide.

Data on the impact of smoking on workplace health and productivity was limited.

Nicotine therapies were initially seen as magic bulletsto smoking cessation.

Access and evidence to support cessationcounselling were not available.

The effect of smoking on workplacehealth and productivity is currentlywell documented.

Start Living Healthier

smoking and human health
Smoking and Human Health

Start Living Healthier

smoking and human health1
Smoking and Human Health

“Canada has no choice but to adopt a new model of health care, a business model that encompasses both preventing and managing chronic disease.” (Conference Board of Canada)

Smoking is a major contributor to several chronic diseases:

  • Cardiovascular disease, including stroke, heart attack, etc.
  • Cancer
  • Emphysema/chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Diabetes

Smoking affects every system in the body

‘Smoke goes where blood flows!’

Start Living Healthier

smoking and human health2
Smoking and Human Health

Tobacco Users are:

  • Six and a half times more likely to die from lung cancerthan non-smokers
  • At double the risk for a stroke
  • At three times the risk to die from heart attack, than non-smokers

In Canada, smoking accounts for a large percentage of deaths:

  • 87% of lung cancer deaths – lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths for both Canadian men and women
  • 30% of all cancer deaths
  • 21% of all coronary heart disease deaths
  • 10% of all infant deaths

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smoking and human health3
Smoking and Human Health

Tobacco is the only legally available consumer product which kills people when used entirely as intended.

World Health Organization

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nicotine withdrawal
Nicotine Withdrawal

8:00 am - Had a cigarette

10:00 am - Experiencing withdrawal

12:00 pm - Reaching peak withdrawal

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Start Living Healthier

smoking cessation myths and misconceptions
Smoking Cessation…Myths and Misconceptions

“Most smokers do not want to stop smoking”

  • FALSE! 91% of people who smoke have at least some desire to quit smoking and over half are seriously considering quitting within the next 6 months

“You just need willpower to stop smoking”

  • FALSE! Nicotine addiction is a complex addiction (a chronic relapsing condition). Supports, such as counselling and medication, are effective tools to help stop smoking

Start Living Healthier

smoking cessation myths and misconceptions1
Smoking Cessation…Myths and Misconceptions

“Stopping smoking is a one time event”

  • FALSE! It takes an average of 4-5 attempts to stop completely. Each stop attempt has proven health benefits

“If you relapse, you’ve failed at your attempt to stop smoking”

  • FALSE! Stopping smoking is a process, not an event. Each ‘attempt’ should be considered a success and the employer should never stop supporting the process

Start Living Healthier

smoking cessation myths and misconceptions2
Smoking Cessation…Myths and Misconceptions

“Smoking cessation only benefits the smoker”

  • FALSE! Non-smokers who work in smoke filled/exposed environments inhale the same 4000 toxic and carcinogenic chemicals as smokers. Cigarettes produce 12 minutes of smoke, and the smoker inhales only 30 seconds of smoke. The rest lingers in the air – and affects all who are exposed

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what s the impact on the workplace

Higher Insurance Costs

Time Off Work

Decreased Productivity

What’s the Impact on the Workplace?

Employees smoking costs employers money!

Employee Smoking

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what does this mean for your company the burden of smoking
What Does This Mean for Your Company?The Burden of Smoking

Enter number here(double click)

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what does this mean for your company return on investment
What Does This Mean for Your Company?Return on Investment

Enter number here(double click)

Calculation based on the assumption that counselling can be obtained free of charge from the Smokers Helpline as well as one-on-one or group counselling offered through occupational health and safety and/or local health authorities.

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smoking the workplace totalling the costs annually

Smoking Breaks

Time Off Due to Illness

Life Insurance

Health Insurance

Smoking Area






Smoking & the Workplace… Totalling the Costs (annually)

TOTAL = $3,555 per Smoking Employee

Equal to an Average of 8.7% of Payroll

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Blood pressure & pulse return to normal

Risk of heart attack begin to decrease





Oxygen levels return to normal

Sense of taste & smell improve

Start Living Healthier


Improvements in lung function and circulation

Risk of heart disease is reduced by 1/2

Risk of lung cancer is reduced by 1/2


10 Years

9 Months



2 Weeks

Lungs improve capacity to clear & reduce infection

Risk of stroke is reduced

Risk of heart disease is similar to a person who never smoked

Start Living Healthier

why help
Why Help?

Improve employee health

  • Smoking is the single most preventable cause of disease and death
  • Second-hand smoke is a health risk to non-smoking employees

Stop smoking programs are the single most effective andcost efficient support employers can provide to improveemployee health

Start Living Healthier

range of smoking cessation programs supports
Range of Smoking Cessation Programs/Supports

Comprehensive(greatest impact!)

  • Offering programs, supports and activities at the workplace (on-site, during work hours, etc.)


  • Working with outside agencies to deliverprograms, supports and activities off-siteand providing self-help materials

Education & Information

  • Provision of educational self-help materials

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Without support, smoking cessation is challenging for employees.

Only 2.5-5% of smokers who attempt to quit unaided will succeed

Start Living Healthier


The provision of workplace support will empower employees to work towards reaching their cessation goals.

Smoking cessation medication tripleslong-term success

NRT doubleslong-term success

Compared to no support, face-to-face counselling increases success

Telephone counselling + one session face-to-face counselling increases success

Medication and intense face-to-face counselling increases success

Telephone counselling + medication increases success

Start Living Healthier

supporting smoking cessation
Supporting Smoking Cessation

Smokers are 2-3 times more likely to succeed with supportthan without

Stop smoking rates increase when a workplace smoke free policy (restriction) is implemented

  • Over 26% of the smokers who wereprohibited from smoking at work hadstopped smoking in the past 6 months,compared to 19% without ano smoking policy

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a comprehensive approach considerations
A Comprehensive ApproachConsiderations

There should be no cost to the employee to participate, and medications/nicotine replacement therapy should be subsidized


Start Living Healthier

a comprehensive approach considerations1
A Comprehensive ApproachConsiderations

Program should be accessible:

  • Offered on-site /made available across multiple sites
  • Offered during work hours (not in lieu of normal breaks)
  • Provide a range of supports - Smokers Helpline, one-on-one counselling, group counselling, etc.


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a comprehensive approach considerations2
A Comprehensive ApproachConsiderations

Smokers Helpline – free, confidential telephone support, tips, tools and advice from trained ‘Quit Specialists’

NS, NB, PEI - 1-877-513-5333www.smokershelpline.ca

NL - 1-800-363-5864 www.smokershelp.net


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a comprehensive approach considerations3
A Comprehensive ApproachConsiderations

The provision of cessation supports should align with what your company can feasibly support (within its capacity)

Consider: How many employees smoke; employee interest in stopping smoking; how employees prefer to engage in cessation; employee expectations around workplace stop smoking supports; gauge employee interest in using the types of supports the employer plans to offer


Start Living Healthier

program success representation engagement of key stakeholders
Program Success:Representation & Engagement of Key Stakeholders

Engage stakeholders at all stages

Provide a voice to all workplace parties

Supported by management, but not management driven

  • A committee could be formed to representmanagement, employees, etc.

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program success promotion
Program Success:Promotion

The program needs to be effectively promoted to generate interest & encourage participation among employees

Employees should have the opportunity to provide feedback on program success and potential areas for improvement

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thank you
Thank You

Thank you to CDHA for their participation in content development.

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  • Canadian Cancer Society (2008). Effective Workplace Tobacco Cessation Interventions
  • Canadian Cancer Society (2008). Second Hand Smoke is Dangerous.
  • Canadian Cancer Society (2008). Tobacco Statistics in Canada;
  • Canadian Lung Association. Making Quit Happen.
  • Conference Board of Canada (2008). How Canada Performs: A Report Card on Canada Health Overview
  • Conference Board of Canada (2006). Smoking and the Bottom Line: Updating the Costs of Smoking in the Workplace
  • GPI Atlantic (2000-2003). Cost of Smoking
  • Health Canada (2009). Smoking and Your Body- Health Effects of Smoking
  • Health Canada (2008). Smoking and Your Body- Health Effects of Smoking
  • Health Canada (2008). Smoking Cessation in the Workplace- A Guide to Helping your Employees Quit

Start Living Healthier

  • Health Canada (2008). Second-hand Smoke.
  • Health Canada (2007). Smoking Diseases. Health Effects of Smoking
  • Health Canada (2007). Towards a Healthier Workplace: A Guidebook on Tobacco Control Policies.
  • Health Canada (2007). Rewards of Quitting
  • Moskowitz, J.M., Lin, Z. and Hudes, E.S (2000). The impact of workplace smoking ordinances in California on smoking cessation. American Journal of Public Health
  • New Zealand Ministry of Health (2007). New Zealand Smoking Cessation Guidelines.
  • Pelletier B, Boles M, Lynch W. Change in health risks and work productivity over time. J. Occup Environ Med. 2004; 46 (7): 746-754.
  • Rehm, J. et al. (2006). The cost of substance abuse in Canada, 2002. Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse”
  • World Health Organization (2003). An international Treaty for Tobacco Control.

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