Smoking Cessation: A Report of the Surgeon General

Partner Toolkit

Getting the Word Out

Most of the 34 million adult Americans who smoke cigarettes want to quit. But smoking will remain the leading preventable cause of disease and death in the U.S. unless more is done to help them quit. In his new report, Smoking Cessation: A Report of the Surgeon General, VADM Dr. Jerome M. Adams calls on everyone, including healthcare professionals, health systems, employers, insurers, public health professionals, and policy makers, to take action to put an end to the staggering—and completely preventable—human and financial tolls that smoking takes on our country.

What can you do to help promote and support cessation?

  • Healthcare professionals can help patients quit smoking by:
    • Advising them to quit
    • Offering them brief counseling on how to quit
    • Prescribing them cessation medications approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
    • Connecting them to additional resources, like a quitline
    • Following up with continued support to help them stay quit
  • Health systems can help people quit smoking by adopting policies and changes to integrate tobacco dependence treatment into routine care and to make it easier for healthcare teams to deliver treatment.
  • Employers and insurers can help people quit smoking by providing insurance coverage for smoking cessation treatment that is comprehensive, barrier-free and widely promoted.
  • Everyone,including public health professionals and policy makers, can support policies that help motivate people who smoke to quit and create an environment that supports quitting. These policies can include:
    • Raising the price of cigarettes
    • Adopting smokefree policies in workplaces, restaurants, and bars
    • Running hard-hitting media campaigns on the dangers of smoking and secondhand smoke, and the benefits of quitting smoking
    • Requiring graphic warning labels on cigarette packaging
    • Funding comprehensive statewide tobacco control programs at CDC-recommended levels
  • To read the full report, executive summary, and related materials, visit

Social Media Materials

Use the messages below on your social media feeds.

  • Twitter (Audience: People who smoke): Read the new report from @Surgeon_General on the benefits of quitting smoking and find proven tools to help you quit. #CessationSGR
  • Twitter (Audience: Healthcare Providers): The @Surgeon_General has released the first report focused solely on smoking cessation in 30 years. Read the report to get the latest science on what helps people quit smoking for good. #CessationSGR
  • Facebook (Audience: People who smoke): A new report from the nation’s doctor @USSurgeonGeneral looks at why quitting smoking can benefit your health and discusses proven treatments to help you quit for good. #CessationSGR

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Press Materials

You Can Help Your Patients Quit Smoking
Healthcare professionals have an important role in helping patients to quit smoking.
Quitting Smoking Can Be Done
Trying to quit smoking? The U.S. Surgeon General has some advice to help you on your quit journey. Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW to get started.

Websites & Other Materials

Feature Article

Promote the feature article on social media, or use it as the basis of a newsletter article or e-blast to your stakeholders.

This feature article introduces the 2020 Surgeon General’s Report, the first one since 1990 to focus solely on the health benefits of quitting smoking. Since 1990, more research is available that confirms quitting smoking entirely is still the best way to improve your current and future health.

Fact Sheets

These four fact sheets summarize top-line messages from the report. You can include the fact sheets in media kits, post them on websites, promote them via social media, or print them as handouts at presentations or conferences.

Consumer Guide

What You Need To Know About Quitting Smoking

This plain-language booklet is written for the general public, particularly those who smoke. It highlights key findings from the report, presents them in an understandable way, and includes links to free resources people can use to help them quit smoking.

Promote the guide on social media and post it on your website, or use content from the guide to develop newsletter articles, blog posts, or other stakeholder communications.

Cover showing a group of people looking at each other and laughing


These videos feature the Surgeon General speaking directly to smokers or to healthcare providers. Share these videos on social media, post them on your websites, or show them at meetings/conferences.

For People Who Smoke
It’s Never Too Late to Quit Smoking
No matter how old you are or how long you’ve been smoking, quitting is the most important thing you can do to improve your health. Call 1-800-QUIT-NOW to get started.
Quitting Smoking Protects Your Health and the Health of Your Baby
Quitting smoking to protect the health of you and your baby is one of the most important things you can do. If you are pregnant or planning to get pregnant, talk to your doctor or call 1-800-QUIT-NOW to get started.
For Healthcare Providers
U.S. Surgeon General Takes Action to Help Patients Quit Smoking
Are you a healthcare professional? The U.S Surgeon General is calling on you to take action to help Americans quit smoking. Make time during every visit to ask your patients about their tobacco use, advise them to quit, and connect them to treatment.
Healthcare Professionals Role in Helping Patients Quit Smoking
Are you a healthcare professional? Quitting smoking is hard, but you can recommend proven treatments to help your patients quit.
Healthcare Professionals: Advise Your Patients To Quit Smoking
Helping your patients quit smoking can have positive health benefits, no matter their age or how long they have smoked. Learn how to help your patients quit for good:
Quitlines Can Help Your Patients Quit Smoking
Combined with your support, calling a toll-free quitline can help your patients quit smoking for good. Refer your patients who smoke to your state quitline through 1-800-QUIT-NOW.
Quitlines Support Your Patients To Quit Smoking
When your patients who smoke call a quitline, trained counselors will help them build a quit plan, discuss medications, and connect them to other free resources to help them quit. Refer your patients who smoke to your state quitline through 1-800-QUIT-NOW.
Counseling and Medication Can Help Your Patients Quit Smoking
Helping your patients quit smoking is one of the most important ways you can improve their health. Learn how to help them quit for good:
Tobacco Dependence is Treatable
Tobacco dependence is treatable, and you can play a critical role in helping patients quit smoking. Learn how to help your patients quit for good:
Help Your Pregnant Patients Quit Smoking
If you have patients who smoke and are pregnant or planning to get pregnant, you can play a key role in helping them quit – for their health and the health of their baby. Learn how to help them quit for good:


First slide in a presentation about the 2020 SGR with a collage of images

This presentation was created to provide partners with a resource that can be used to promote the report. The presentation highlights what’s new in the report, a chapter outline, background on its scientific development, the major conclusions, actions that stakeholders can take to support and enhance cessation, and key takeaways from the report.

Download the presentation (PPTX–8 MB)

Promotional Postcard

This printable 6 x 9 inch postcard summarizes key issues covered in the report. It also includes links to more information about the report and resources to help promote and support cessation.

Download and print* (PDF–393 KB) to distribute at meetings or conferences.

*NOTE: This PDF is provided for PRINTING ONLY.

Tools & Resources by Audience

Collage of images representing partner audiences

Group of doctors

Healthcare Professionals

Tools and smoking cessation resources that can help healthcare professionals ensure that their patients have the right resources to begin their quit journeys.

State Health Department

Health Systems

Information on the basics of health systems change, with ideas and useful resources to help health systems and practices increase the reach and effectiveness of tobacco cessation interventions.

Group in a meeting with one person speaking


Information on the evidence base for tobacco cessation insurance coverage, best practices for designing cessation coverage, and state case studies of expanding Medicaid cessation coverage and services.

Workplace health and productivity


Information on effective workplace health programs and policies, including information on tobacco cessation programs and smokefree workplace policies.