Supporting smoking cessation through standardization

Smoking remains the leading preventable cause of premature death in Canada. Approximately 48,000 Canadians die every year of smoking-related illnesses and costs the Canadian economy more than $12 billion in healthcare and other expenses on an annual basis. The long-term quitting rate of smokers is very low and relapse rates are high, which threatens the Government of Canada’s commitment to reduce tobacco use to less than 5% by 2035.

To help the Government reach its objective, SCC hosted a standardization workshop, supporting Health Canada to identify solutions to challenges in adopting a national standard for smoking cessation, and potentially scoping and coordinating the development of one or more National Standard(s) of Canada, based on leading practices such as the University of Ottawa’s Heart Institute Ottawa Model for Smoking Cessation (OMSC). Workshop participants brainstormed solutions to the main challenges, such as human and financial resources, and societal barriers to change.

Following the workshop, SCC has contracted a standards development organization for the development of a National Standard of Canada for smoking cessation, along with a framework document for healthcare institution administrators interested in implementing the standard after publication.