The date has arrived.
As of October 1, 2022, the revised administrative code chapter DHS 75.24(7) requires all Wisconsin behavioral health providers who treat substance use disorders to have plans in place to assess and treat tobacco use and to have a policy about smoke-free environments.
It’s due to Wisconsin’s revised Administrative Code Chapter DHS 75.
This year, UW-CTRI has partnered with the state to develop a dedicated website, free trainings, toolkits, fact sheets, case studies and technical assistance to help providers prepare for the new requirements.
The site has drawn more than 1,475 visits from more than 340 individuals. The webinars have been viewed more than 440 times, including by groups of clinic staff.
“I think those who listen to the webinars understand that this is what’s best for their clients and are more motivated to get on board,” said Karen Conner, who manages the Wisconsin Nicotine Treatment Integration Project (WiNTiP), a program sponsored by the Wisconsin Division of Care and Treatment Services and Tobacco Prevention and Control Program.
“It’s apparent providers are moving through the stages of change as organizations,” said UW-CTRI Regional Outreach Specialist Sarah Thompson. “People are asking for recordings of the webinars to share with their teams. They’re working on building buy-in at their facilities.”
Thompson and Conner collaborated to create the online toolkits.
“I think we’re getting the word out there to behavioral health providers that UW-CTRI is a training and technical assistance provider,” Conner said. UW-CTRI regional outreach specialists have been providing that, both in-person and via technology.
“We can help them not only meet the minimum requirements,” Conner said, “but to do the right thing because their clients’ health depends on it.”
“Overall, they’ve taken implementation seriously,” said Thompson. “Of course, you have some who are further along, who are more invested than others, and are willing to go beyond the minimum requirements and do the work.”
“We know that, even though it’s after the October deadline, there’s still a lot of work to be done to help these facilities meet the DHS 75 requirement,” Conner said. “The more they hear about the importance of assessing for tobacco use and the importance of tobacco-free environments, the more it will resonate.”