By Lisa Brassill, Quality Improvement, Molina Healthcare of Florida
To kick off Quality Improvement Week 2012 at Molina Healthcare of Florida, an employee wellness fair was held on October 15, 2012. An array of services were made available to the Molina employees including blood pressure screenings, oral health information and various other health related information presented by the local health department. One of most successful participants was Area Health Education Center (AHEC) who had extensive information on quitting smoking. The vendor generated enough interest that we were able to begin a smoking cessation program here at Molina.
Through the generous support of management, we were able to host the classes each Tuesday for 6 weeks from 12-1pm at our building in Doral. This was integral in the success of the program as employees didn’t need to schedule time away from their families or work to seek counseling. Molina made the investment in its employees and their health. Quitting smoking is one of the most difficult behaviors to change. Each year half of all smokers attempt to quit. Most smokers will have multiple attempts before they are successful in quitting smoking.
Evelis Green, who was successful in quitting, started smoking when she was just 15 years old. She made the decision to quit now because it was making her asthma worse. “I know I will find stress down the line but I have resources now to help me alleviate the stress, thanks to the Smoking Cessation class,” said Green.
In addition to the already noticeable improvement in her health and breathing, Green mentioned other benefits that she has noticed since quitting three months ago including saving money, elimination of smoke odor on clothes and in her car and house, and the fact that it is easier to exercise.
So what happens at one of the smoking cessation groups?
- Education and Guidance: Smokers are educated on health consequences of smoking and explain the addictive nature of nicotine. Smokers are assisted to develop and implement a Quit Plan.
- Support: By being part of a group smokers feel unconditional support; like they are not the only ones struggling to quit smoking. The group often provides the best suggestions and ideas they can use in their Quit Plans.
- Free NRT (Nicotine Replacement Therapy)- Participants are educated on how to use the patch and provided a four-week supply to help them with their quit attempt