Is Cost of Medication for Quit Smoking Important for Smokers, Experience of Using Champix in Iranian Smoking Cessation Program 2016

Gholamreza Heydari


Background: Providing smoking cessation services are special importance to tobacco control programs. To date, Champix is a new expensive medication for smoking cessation available nationally. Champix has both agonist and antagonist activities and can reduce nicotine dependence
and withdrawal symptoms. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the duration of using Champix based on its cost.

Methods: This quasi‑experimental study was conducted with smokers presenting to the Tanaffos Smoking Cessation Clinic in Tehran, Iran 2016. Smokers were visited by a physician 3 times at 1‑week intervals for counseling. Smokers started to use Champix and stopped smoking in
the 2nd week of counseling and were followed up by phone and through regular visits to the clinic at 1, 3, and 6 months postintervention. Some of them did not continue medication for 12 weeks because of its cost.

Results: A total of 227 smokers including 133 males (58%) with a mean age of 43 years were enrolled of whom 116 (51.1%), 89 (43.6%), and 34 (20.6%) had quit smoking after 1, 3, and 6 months, respectively. Quit rates were signifcantly higher among those who used Champix for more than 6 weeks, and this rate was not correlated with age, sex, educational level, or nicotine dependence.

Conclusions: Use of Champix for more than 6 weeks increases the quitting success rate compared with using for a shorter time. The cost of Champix was important for smokers and adding Champix to the list of insurance medication or getting it free of charge is needed.

Keywords: Champix, quit, smoking

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