iQuits Project Presents Final Report


The Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe partnered with the American Indian Cancer Foundation (AICAF) and their iQuits project beginning in August 2015 with the goal of increasing the number of Band members who give up smoking.

The iQuits interdepartmental team concluded May 29, with a final meeting conducted by AICAF Research Coordinator Delilah Robb. During this meeting, progress was reported and future goals outlined.

The collaboration between AICAF and the Mille Lacs Band has demonstrated the positive relationship between the two organizations and their effectiveness when working together.

Kristine Rhodes, CEO at American Indian Cancer Foundation, said, “It’s really exciting to build this foundation to help decrease the high rate of smoking in Indian communities.”

AICAF's iQuits project works with American Indian health systems to advance knowledge regarding systems-lev- el approaches to smoking cessation. The project provides support for the integration of the 5 As model into every clinic interaction:

Ask: Identify and document tobacco use status for every patient at every visit;

Advise: In a clear, strong, and personal manner, urge every tobacco user to quit;

Assess: Find out if the tobacco user is willing to make a quit attempt at this time;

Assist: If the patient is willing to attempt to quit, use counseling and pharmacy information; and

Arrange: Schedule follow-up, in person or by telephone, ideally within the first week after the quit date.

To work toward that large overall goal, the team focused on increased quit attempts and the use of quit services (such as counseling) during the visit. It also included medication or nicotine replacement therapy and referrals to a cessation program or a quitline.

Activities for this project included a series of training sessions given across the entire Mille Lacs Band Health and Human Services Department. Training topics included an over- view of the 5 As, motivational interviewing, cessation medication, electronic cigarettes, and treating commercial tobacco dependence in clinical practice.

The iQuits interdepartmental team also focused on a series of activities used to assess Ne-la-Shing Clinic’s commercial t bacco workflow and develop systems changes specific to them.

Information provided by Delilah Robb, Research Coordinator, American Indian Cancer Foundation.

Photo by Brett Larson: Back: Robyn Garcia, Donna Sutton, Brittany Smith, and Kristine Rhodes. Front: Delilah Robb, Colleen McKinney, and Barb Martin.