Trends in smoking documentation rates in safety net clinics

Stephen P. Fortmann*, Steffani R. Bailey, Neon B. Brooks, Brian Hitsman, Sarah Stuart Rittner, Suzanne E. Gillespie, Christian Nissen Hill, Michael C. Leo, Phillip M. Crawford, Weiming Hu, Dana S. King, Conall O'Cleirigh, Jon Puro, Mary Ann McBurnie

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Objective: To assess the impact of provider incentive policy on smoking status documentation. Data Sources: Primary data were extracted from structured electronic medical records (EMRs) from 15 community health centers (CHCs). Study Design: This was an observational study of data from 2006 to 2013, assessing changes in documentation of smoking status over time. Data Extraction Methods: We extracted structured EMR data for patients age 18 and older with at least one primary care visit. Principal Findings: Rates of documented smoking status rose from 30 percent in 2006 to 90 percent in 2013; the largest increase occurred from 2011 to 2012 following policy changes (21.3% [95% CI, 8.2%, 34.4%] from the overall trend). Rates varied by clinic and across patient subgroups. Conclusions: Documentation of smoking status improved markedly after introduction of new federal standards. Further improvement in documentation is still needed, especially for males, nonwhite patients, those using opioids, and HIV + patients. More research is needed to study whether changes in documentation lead to improvements in counseling, cessation, and patient outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)170-177
Number of pages8
JournalHealth Services Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2020


  • community health centers
  • electronic health records
  • meaningful use criteria
  • tobacco use
  • uniform data system standards

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy


Dive into the research topics of 'Trends in smoking documentation rates in safety net clinics'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this