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SAMHSA publishes a Tobacco Cessation Toolkit for Substance Use Disorder Treatment Programs

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The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has created a tobacco cessation toolkit for substance use disorder (SUD) treatment programs. The toolkit is composed of three pieces:

  • Implementing Tobacco Cessation Programs in Substance Use Disorder Treatment Settings: A Quick Guide for Program Directors and Clinicians This guide contains an overview of the harms of tobacco use and the benefits of tobacco cessation and a smoke-free workplace. It also includes tips for SUD treatment settings to begin implementing their own tobacco cessation programs. 
  • Quitting Tobacco – Help your Clients to a Healthier Life (for providers) This pamphlet contains reasons to combine smoking cessation and SUD treatment, client testimonials, and resources for implementing a tobacco cessation program. It also explains the benefits of tobacco cessation programs to the provider program. 
  • You Can Quit Tobacco – Benefits and Tips for Quitting for Good (for clients) This pamphlet contains information on the health benefits that come with quitting tobacco, as well as the benefits to quitting tobacco while achieving recovery from SUD. 

“Smoking cessation in substance use disorder treatment can increase a person’s chances for long-term recovery and reduces risks of smoking related illnesses.”[1] said Dr. Elinore McCance-Katz, Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use. “This toolkit gives providers information on implementing a tobacco cessation program in their practice.”

The rate of tobacco-related deaths is substantially higher for people with substance use disorder (SUD) as compared with the general population. Despite this, in 2016 nearly 53 percent of substance abuse treatment facilities in the United States did not offer tobacco cessation services. Aside from the many known health benefits of quitting, tobacco cessation increases the odds of long-term abstinence from illicit drug use.

For information on quitting tobacco use, tobacco control resources, and SAMHSA’s tobacco use prevention efforts, visit: SAMHSA also established the National Center of Excellence for Tobacco-Free Recovery, a national center with specialized subject matter expertise to provide training and technical assistance to providers on how to help reduce tobacco use among persons with behavioral health disorders. To download the Toolkit, click here:


[1] Knudsen, H.K., Studts, C.R., & Studts, J.L. (2012). The implementation of smoking cessation counseling in substance abuse treatment. Journal of Behavioral Health Services and Research, 39(1), 28-41.

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The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is the agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that leads public health efforts to advance the behavioral health of the nation. SAMHSA’s mission is to lead public health and service delivery efforts that promote mental health, prevent substance misuse, and provide treatments and supports to foster recovery while ensuring equitable access and better outcomes.

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