Tobacco cessation services and screening for Medi-Cal patients

The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends that healthcare providers ask all individuals ages 18 years and older about tobacco use, and that providers offer tobacco cessation interventions to users. Providers should also offer tailored counseling to pregnant women who smoke. Finally, interventions, education, or brief counseling should be offered to prevent initiation of tobacco use in school-aged children and adolescents.

Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan is responsible for ensuring that primary care physicians (PCP) and their qualified staff implement the interventions outlined in California Department of Health Care Services, Health and Human Services Agency's Policy Letter 16-014 (PDF, 122 KB).

1. Identify, initially and thereafter annually, all members of any age who use tobacco products or are exposed to tobacco smoke and document this information in the member's medical record.

2. Offer FDA-approved tobacco cessation medications to non-pregnant adults of any age. The medications include:

  • Bupropion SR (without prior authorization)
  • Varenicline
  • nicotine gum, inhaler, lozenge, nasal spray, and patch

Members qualify for:

  • A 90-day treatment regimen of medications without other restrictions.
  • Medication for at least two separate quit attempts per year, with no mandatory break required.
  • Medication without counseling if the member does not want counseling.

3. Refer tobacco users of any age to individual, group, and telephone counseling. Members qualify for four counseling sessions of at least ten minutes for at least two separate quit attempts each year, without prior authorization. You may:

4. Ask all pregnant women if they use tobacco or are exposed to tobacco smoke. If a smoker, offer at least one face-to-face counseling session per quit attempt, and refer the member to a tobacco cessation quit line.

Counseling services cover 60 days post-delivery, plus any additional needed days to end the respective month. Smoking cessation medications are not recommended during pregnancy.

5. Provide education, including brief counseling to children and adolescents, to prevent tobacco initiation in school-aged children and adolescents, in accordance with AAP Bright Futures periodicity schedule and anticipatory guidance.

6. Review the following provider training information:

Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan monitors provider performance in implementing these tobacco cessation interventions through a number of processes, including Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) surveys, medical record review, and the Facility Site Review process.


Refer to our Health Education materials library or call Customer Care and ask for the Health Education Department.


Contact Blue Shield Promise Health Education Department:

 Phone: (562) 580-6094, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday



Behavioral Health Services

Blue Shield Promise behavioral health services cover mental health, substance use disorder, and autism spectrum disorder behavioral health treatment.

Population Health Management

Our Disease Management Program provides education, care coordination, and support for members with certain chronic conditions.

Health education for Medi-Cal providers

Find information and health education materials for your Medi-Cal patients.

Health education materials for members

Find health education brochures and videos available to Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan members.

Health and wellness programs for Medi-Cal members

Help your patients find resources for staying fit, managing chronic conditions like asthma or high blood pressure, maintaining a healthy weight, and more.

Health assessment guidelines for Medi-Cal providers

Learn how to conduct health assessments, find age-appropriate patient questionnaires and forms, and related provider training materials.

Provider Connection

Access network provider tools on Provider Connection website.

Health Care Options: 1-844-580-7272, de lunes a viernes, de 8:00 a. m. - a 6:00 p. m. Los usuarios del sistema TTY deben llamar al 1-800-430-7077.

Para obtener información sobre Blue Shield Promise Cal MediConnect Plan y otras opciones de Cal MediConnect para la atención de su salud, comuníquese con el Department of Health Care Services (Departamento de Servicios de Atención de la Salud) al 1-800-430-4263 (TTY: 1-800-735-2922) o visite la página

Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan es una organización de atención administrada que pertenece completamente a Blue Shield of California, y que ofrece Medi-Cal, Cal MediConnect, Medicare Advantage HMO y Dual Eligible Special Needs Plans (D-SNP, Planes de necesidades especiales con doble elegibilidad).

© 2002-2023. California Physicians’ Service DBA Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan. Todos los derechos reservados.

California Physicians’ Service DBA Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan es un licenciatario independiente de Blue Shield Association..

Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan es un plan HMO y un plan HMO D-SNP que tiene un contrato con Medicare y un contrato con el Programa Medicaid del Estado de California. La inscripción en Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan depende de la renovación del contrato.

Las redes de proveedores pueden cambiar en cualquier momento.

Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan complies with applicable state laws and federal civil rights laws, and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, ancestry, religion, sex, marital status, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, or disability.

Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan cumple con las leyes estatales y las leyes federales de derechos civiles vigentes, y no discrimina por motivos de raza, color, país de origen, ascedencial, religión, sexo, estado civil, genero, identidad de genero, orientación sexual, edad ni discapacidad.

Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan 遵循適用的州法律和聯邦公民權利法律,並且不以種族、膚色、原國籍、血統、宗教、性別、婚姻 狀況、性別認同、性取向、年齡或殘障為由而進行歧視。


Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan, 3840 Kilroy Airport Way, Long Beach, CA  90806

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