Getting inspired by the Latin American and Caribbean Conference on Tobacco OR Health

23-julieJulie Champagne
Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas
23-flag United States of America
04 Apr 2014

How did you get started with tobacco control?

I came to the recent Latin American and Caribbean Conference on Tobacco OR Health with Beatriz Champagne, who is the Executive Director of the InterAmerican Heart Foundation and also my mother-in-law.  As a respiratory therapist and critical care nurse, tobacco control is of great interest to me.

What new learning will you take away from the conference?

In the preconference session on treatment, we learned about motivational interviewing, and the dynamic of yielding to where the patient wants to take the dialog, rather than pushing back or issuing instructions.  They didn’t teach us that in nursing school, but I think it will be very useful.

What tobacco control challenges do you face in your profession?

As a critical care nurse, I see a lot of patients who smoke, but it’s hard to maintain an ongoing relationship with these patients – we typically see them for only a brief period.  Also, I know a number of respiratory therapists who smoke themselves, which is surprising!

When you return to the hospital where you work, what will you tell your colleagues about the conference?

I will ask my manager if it would be possible to ask the new hired employees to show how to have a motivational interview with a patient about smoking. Then the new nurse can demonstrate the process. If they are not able to, then we need to educate the nurse on how to speak to the patient about smoking by using the motivational interviewing process.