Advanced Practice

Smoking Cessation: An Oncology Clinical Nurse Specialist–Led Program

Susan D. Bruce

smoking, smoking cessation, tobacco use cessation, nicotine dependence
CJON 2018, 22(3), 259-261. DOI: 10.1188/18.CJON.259-261

Healthcare providers often do not have the time to counsel patients on how to quit smoking. Consequently, little emphasis is placed on this pursuit, and no behavioral counseling is done. Using medications approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in combination with behavioral counseling has been shown to be effective in smoking cessation programs. Oncology nurses, and advanced practice nurses in particular, can play a significant role in helping patients to quit smoking. This article details how one oncology clinical nurse specialist created a smoking cessation program at her institution.


  • Continued cigarette smoking after a cancer diagnosis can increase a patient’s risk of developing smoking-related illness and secondary primary tumors, as well as affect treatment efficacy. 
  • A growing body of evidence supports the effectiveness of healthcare providers, including advanced practice nurses and physician assistants, in promoting smoking cessation.
  • An understanding of nicotine addiction and evidence-based strategies to combat the addiction is necessary for those providing smoking cessation counseling.
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