6. Record Smoking Status

This lesson will demonstrate the steps necessary to meet the Meaningful Use requirement for recording smoking status.


SOAPware 2011 or later must be used.

Note: To determine the version of SOAPware being used, Click on Help > About SOAPware. This will open a window which will show the version and build of SOAPware currently in use.


This requirement will be tracked in the MU Patient Dashboard and the  Meaningful Use Dashboard.

Measure Criteria

Objective:  Record smoking status for patients 13 years old and older.

Measure:  More than 50% of all unique patients 13 years old or older seen by the eligible provider must have smoking status recorded as structured data.

For more detailed information on this measure, please click on the "Reference" link below. This CMS documentation includes information on exclusions, attestation requirements, a definition of terms and important additional information.


Reference CMS: Record Smoking Status


Measure Calculation

Denominator: The number of unique patients seen, age 13 or older, that have a face-to-face encounter during the reporting period.

Note: The denominator is unique patients rather than unique patient visits during the reporting period. Therefore, if a patient is seen three times in the reporting period, you only have to fulfill the rule once for that patient, rather than at all 3 encounters.   However, the patient must have at least one face-to-face encounter during the reporting period in order to fulfill the rule.

Numerator: The number of patients in the denominator who have smoking status recorded as structured data.

Threshold: The resulting percentage must be more than 50%.

* Scoring is individual, provider-based and not practice-wide.

Recording Smoking Status

Using structured SMARText items in the Summary Tobacco field is required to meet this Meaningful Use measure.

To expedite meeting all the required needs for structured data related to tobacco, we have created a SMARText pick list for use in the Summary Tobacco field that will address smoking status, tobacco use and tobacco cessation issues. The shortcut for this list is "TobMU". To learn how to enter and use this list, see: SOAPware Summary Tobacco field.

Note that in addition to Smoking Status, Tobacco Use and Tobacco Cessation are also included in the TobMU pick list.  The Tobacco Use and Tobacco Cessation items can be used to meet one of the core quality measures (see Clinical Quality Measures).  

SOAPware recommends that clinics implement workflows to update the patient's smoking status in the Summary Tobacco field on a regular basis.

Using "TobMU"

Using "TobMU"

The "TobMU" Picklist is the recommended venue for tracking smoking status in the patient Summary, as it can be used to meet the needs for both Smoking Status and the Tobacco Use and Cessation clinical quality measure.

To use this list, insert the TobMU shortcut in the Summary Tobacco Field.

*Note: The first time this list is used, a Shift + F11 search will be required to locate the shortcut item.  After that, simply type the shortcut code "tobmu" in the field and then hit the space bar.

After the group of pick lists has been inserted, click on each list to reveal the choices in the SMARText Quick Access window.

Using "SmoSta" to Record Smoking Status

Using "SmoSta" to Record Smoking Status

To meet the Record Smoking Status requirement, a pick list item is available (with shortcut of "SmoSta") to designate the smoking status. (This is the first of 3 pick lists included in TobMU.)

The choices for Smoker Status are shown above.  Click on the list to see the options and then select the desired item.

Smoking Status and MU Patient Dashboard

Smoking Status and MU Patient Dashboard

This measure is tracked in the MU Patient Dashboard under "Smoking Status".  The Patient Dashboard can be viewed by selecting View > MU Patient Dashboard.

Smoking Status definitions* are defined as:

1. Current every day smoker

2. Current some day smoker

3. Former smoker

4. Never smoker

5. Smoker, current status unknown

6. Unknown if ever smoked

* Smoking Status definitions are designated by the ONC (Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT).

This meaningful use measure requires that the specific smoking status SMARText items listed above be used in the patient's Summary Tobacco field.  Once a smoking status has been recorded in the Summary Tobacco field, the MU Patient Dashboard icon will change to a green check mark.  

Note: The MU Patient Dashboard will be grayed out if there are no SOAPnote encounters.  It will also remain grayed out if the active SOAPnote encounter is signed off or if the SOAPnote encounter is a Non Face-to-Face encounter.

Meaningful Use Dashboard

Meaningful Use Dashboard

This measure is tracked in the Meaningful Use Dashboard under "Smoking Status".  The Meaningful Use Dashboard can be accessed by selecting SOAPware > Meaningful Use Dashboard.

The Meaningful Use Dashboard will display the Numerator, Denominator and percentage for this measure, as well as, graph the Trend for the dates selected.  

*Note: The dashboard icon will display a gray X if the threshold for this measure has not been met for the selected reporting period.  The icon will change to a green check mark once the threshold for the meaningful use measure has been met.