Implementing Smoking Cessation Services in the Pharmacy

Tags: Online Learning, Professional Pharmacy Services, Addictions

Important note: This program is currently undergoing re-accreditation and is not currently open for registration. The program will re-open for registration in September 2017, please check back then.

Pharmacists can play a vital role in the smoking cessation efforts of their patients. Not only are pharmacists some of the most accessible healthcare professionals, but they are uniquely familiar with patients’ drug therapy needs and the various smoking cessation therapies. Pharmacists are also recognized advocates for community wellness and are trusted by patients to offer information and support on a wide variety of health-related issues. 

This online professional development program provides an overview of concepts and best-practice approaches currently used in the management of smoking cessation by healthcare professionals. Practical information on how to set up and run a smoking cessation clinic is also presented to assist pharmacists who are interested in starting such initiatives.  

This program was made possible in part through an unrestricted educational grant from Pfizer Canada Inc. 

Pharmacists wishing to provide smoking cessation support to Ontario Drug Benefit (ODB) patients under the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care’s pharmacy-based smoking cessation program are required to complete a smoking cessation training program in order to be eligible to receive funding for their expertise and professional services in this area. The Ontario Pharmacists Association’s online smoking cessation program meets this Ministry training requirement.  Among the requirements for participation in the Ministry’s smoking cessation program:

  • The designated manager of a pharmacy that provides a smoking cessation program must be trained in smoking cessation within six months from the time the pharmacy provides the smoking cessation service.
  • A pharmacist who is trained in smoking cessation must be available during hours of operation at the pharmacy that offers a smoking cessation program.
  • Training for smoking cessation must be updated at a minimum of every 5 years.
  • A copy of the completed smoking cessation training program should be readily retrievable at the pharmacy for purposes of audit.

For further information, please visit the Healthcare Professionals section of the Ministry’s website:

How to register: Please scroll to the bottom of the page and click on the "pricing and registration" link; a drop-down will open with pricing information for members and non-members. Select the option that applies to you, then click on “add to cart” to start the registration process.

For more information on the Allied Health Professional Development Fund (AHPDF), click here.

Target audience and pre-requisites

The information provided through this online program, as well as the OPA Smoking Cessation Toolkit, is intended to guide pharmacists through the standards and documentation involved in the ODB smoking cessation program.  

There are no pre-requisites for this course.

The OPA Smoking Cessation Toolkit

Ontario Pharmacists Association members are encouraged to log into the members-only section of OPA’s website to access the smoking cessation toolkit items. Registrants of this program can access the toolkit under the Additional Reference section of the online learning system.

Program outline

Online learning modules

  • Module 1: The Essentials
    • Health consequences of tobacco use
    • Clinical intervention for smoking cessation
    • Pharmacotherapy for smoking cessation
    • Drug interactions with tobacco smoke
    • Pharmacy based smoking cessation clinics
  • Module 2: Setting up a smoking cessation program
    • Staff training requirements
    • Staff meeting – getting buy-in
    • Understanding the documentation tools
    • Reimbursement for cessation services
    • Pharmacy workflow and resources
    • Start-up tools
    • Patient resources
  • Module 3: Delivering a smoking cessation program
    • Screening patients for smoking cessation
    • Enrolling patients
    • First consultation meeting
    • Primary follow-ups
    • Secondary follow-ups
    • Evaluation form
    • Tips for pharmacotherapy
    • Using a smoking cessation resource toolkit

Online assessments

  • Online multiple choice examination
  • Online checklist exercise
  • Online case study exercise
  • Online reflective exercise

Learning objectives 

Upon completion of this program, participants will be able to:

  • Identify patients who smoke
  • Identify smokers who may be willing to make an attempt to quit smoking
  • Perform a smoking cessation intervention
  • Understand the training requirements for reimbursement
  • Discuss a pharmacy team approach to smoking cessation program implementation
  • List the set up and preparation steps needed to operate a smoking cessation program
  • Prepare a smoking cessation program in a community pharmacy setting
  • Support patients through the quit smoking process to achieve success
  • Document and bill for smoking cessation interventions

Learning format 

Participants will have the opportunity to learn through: 

  • Online, didactic learning modules
  • Interactive, multiple choice assessment activities
  • Reflective exercises

Subject matter experts

This program has been developed in part with contributions from the following subject matter experts:

  • Peter Zawadzki, BScPhm, RPh
  • Jane Ling, BScPhm, RPh
  • Carolyn Whiskin, BScPhm, RPh, NCMP
  • Michael Boivin, BScPhm, RPh
  • Kacie Lunn, BScPhm, RPh

Continuing Education Units 

The program is currently undergoing a CCCEP re-accreditation process; this information will be updated once the program has been re-accredited.

Program Letter of Completion 

To receive the letter of completion for this program, participants must complete the following requirements prior to the program’s accreditation expiry date*:

  1. Complete the program’s online modules (instructions will be emailed to you separately after registration).
  2. Complete the multiple-choice exam and achieve a score of 70 per cent or more within a maximum of two attempts.
  3. Complete the checklist exercise, case study exercise and reflective exercise.
    • Please note that it takes 5-7 business days to mark the reflective exercise.
  4. Complete the overall program evaluation and speaker evaluations.

*Please note: Access to this program is provided until the program’s current accreditation expiry date.

Last Updated: July 10, 2017

Inquiries: Please contact OPA’s Professional Development Team by phone at 416-441-0788, option 3 (toll-free in Ontario at 1-877-341-0788, option 3), or by email at

Cancellation policy: Requests for cancellations must be submitted in writing to no later than five days after access to the program has been emailed to you. A $30 (+HST) administration and processing fee will apply. Cancellations will not be permitted once log-in to access the program material has been initiated. Program registration fees will not be refunded after the cancellation deadline.

Protecting your privacy: Your privacy is important to us. Some information you provide to OPA in program registration forms and exercises may be considered personal information. The Association collects, uses, and shares the information contained in program registration forms and exercises for the sole purposes of processing your registration, issuing certificates/letters of completion, awarding continuing education credits, and delivering OPA services, programs, and publications to you.

Learners’ code of conduct: By registering for an OPA education program, you agree to follow OPA’s Learners’ Code of Conduct. For further details click here


Event Date: Recurring | City: Online | Venue: Online

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