Impact of a statewide Internet-based tobacco cessation intervention.
ABSTRACT An increasing number of people have access to the Internet, and more people are seeking tobacco cessation resources online every year. Despite the proliferation of various online interventions and their evident acceptance and reach, little research has addressed their impact in the real world. Typically, low response rates to Internet-based follow-up surveys generate unrepresentative samples and large confidence intervals when reporting results.
The aim of this study was to achieve a high response rate on follow-up evaluation in order to better determine the impact of an Internet-based tobacco cessation intervention provided to tobacco users in Minnesota, United States.
Participants included 607 men and women aged 18 and over residing in Minnesota who self-reported current tobacco use when registering for an Internet-based tobacco cessation program between February 2 and April 13, 2004. Participants were given access to an interactive website with features including social support, expert systems, proactive email, chat sessions, and online counselors. Mixed-mode follow-up (online survey with telephone survey for online nonrespondents) occurred 6 months after registration.
Of the study participants, 77.6% (471/607) responded to the 6-month follow-up survey (39.4% online and 38.2% by telephone). Among respondents, 17.0% (80/471, 95% CI = 13.6%-20.4%) reported that they had not smoked in the past 7 days (observed rate). Assuming all nonrespondents were still smoking (missing=smoking rate), the quit rate was 13.2% (80/607, 95% CI = 10.5%-15.9%).
This mixed-mode follow-up survey of an online smoking cessation program achieved a high response rate and provides a more accurate estimate of long-term cessation rates than has been previously reported. Quit rates for the Internet-based tobacco cessation program were higher than those expected for unassisted quit attempts and are comparable to other evidence-based behavioral interventions. The similarities between quit rates demonstrates that an Internet-based cessation program may have as great an impact as, and can have wider reach than, other cessation programs such as those delivered by telephone. With over 100000 people having visited the website and over 23000 having registered, a 6-month self-reported quit rate of 13.2% suggests that the quitplan.com program helped over 3000 Minnesotans remain tobacco free for at least 6 months. Results of this study suggest that an Internet-based cessation program is a useful tool in states' efforts to provide comprehensive cessation tools for smokers.
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ABSTRACT: Novel interventions tailored to blue collar workers are needed to reduce the disparities in smoking rates among occupational groups. The main objective of this study was to evaluate the efficacy and usage of the Web-enhanced "Tobacco Tactics" intervention targeting operating engineers (heavy equipment operators) compared to the "1-800-QUIT-NOW" telephone line. Operating engineers (N=145) attending one of 25 safety training sessions from 2010 through 2012 were randomized to either the Tobacco Tactics website with nurse counseling by phone and access to nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) or to the 1-800-QUIT-NOW telephone line, which provided an equal number of phone calls and NRT. The primary outcome was self-reported 7-day abstinence at 30-day and 6-month follow-up. The outcomes were compared using chi-square tests, t tests, generalized mixed models, and logistic regression models. The average age was 42 years and most were male (115/145, 79.3%) and white (125/145, 86.2%). Using an intent-to-treat analysis, the Tobacco Tactics website group showed significantly higher quit rates (18/67, 27%) than the 1-800-QUIT NOW group (6/78, 8%) at 30-day follow-up (P=.003), but this difference was no longer significant at 6-month follow-up. There were significantly more positive changes in harm reduction measures (quit attempts, number of cigarettes smoked per day, and nicotine dependence) at both 30-day and 6-month follow-up in the Tobacco Tactics group compared to the 1-800-QUIT-NOW group. Compared to participants in the 1-800-QUIT NOW group, significantly more of those in the Tobacco Tactics website group participated in the interventions, received phone calls and NRT, and found the intervention helpful. The Web-enhanced Tobacco Tactics website with telephone support showed higher efficacy and reach than the 1-800-QUIT-NOW intervention. Longer counseling sessions may be needed to improve 6-month cessation rates. Clinicaltrials.gov NCT01124110; http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01124110 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/6TfKN5iNL).Journal of Medical Internet Research 01/2014; 16(11):e255. DOI:10.2196/jmir.3375 · 4.67 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Smoking is the most preventable cause of death. Although effective, Web-assisted tobacco interventions are underutilized and recruitment is challenging. Understanding who participates in Web-assisted tobacco interventions may help in improving recruitment. To understand characteristics of smokers participating in a Web-assisted tobacco intervention (Decide2Quit.org). In addition to the typical Google advertisements, we expanded Decide2Quit.org recruitment to include referrals from medical and dental providers. We assessed how the expanded recruitment of smokers changed the users' characteristics, including comparison with a population-based sample of smokers from the national Behavioral Risk Factors Surveillance Survey (BRFSS). Using a negative binomial regression, we compared demographic and smoking characteristics by recruitment source, in particular readiness to quit and association with subsequent Decide2Quit.org use. The Decide2Quit.org cohort included 605 smokers; the 2010 BRFSS dataset included 69,992. Compared to BRFSS smokers, a higher proportion of Decide2Quit.org smokers were female (65.2% vs 45.7%, P=.001), over age 35 (80.8% vs 67.0%, P=.001), and had some college or were college graduates (65.7% vs 45.9%, P=.001). Demographic and smoking characteristics varied by recruitment; for example, a lower proportion of medical- (22.1%) and dental-referred (18.9%) smokers had set a quit date or had already quit than Google smokers (40.1%, P<.001). Medical- and dental-referred smokers were less likely to use Decide2Quit.org functions; in adjusted analysis, Google smokers (predicted count 17.04, 95% CI 14.97-19.11) had higher predicted counts of Web page visits than medical-referred (predicted count 12.73, 95% CI 11.42-14.04) and dental-referred (predicted count 11.97, 95% CI 10.13-13.82) smokers, and were more likely to contact tobacco treatment specialists. Recruitment from clinical practices complimented Google recruitment attracting smokers less motivated to quit and less experienced with Web-assisted tobacco interventions. Clinicaltrials.gov NCT00797628; http://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT00797628 (Archived by WebCite at http://www.webcitation.org/6F3tqz0b3).Journal of Medical Internet Research 01/2013; 15(5):e77. DOI:10.2196/jmir.2385 · 4.67 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: A recent meta-analysis of Internet interventions for smoking cessation found mixed evidence regarding effectiveness. One explanation may be differential use of non-assigned cessation treatments-including other Internet programs-that either amplify or mask study intervention effects. We examined the impact of non-assigned treatment use on cessation outcomes in The iQUITT Study, a randomized trial of Internet and telephone treatment for smoking cessation. Participants were randomized to a basic Internet (BI) comparison condition (N = 675), enhanced Internet (EI: N = 651), or EI plus telephone counseling (EI+P: N = 679). The primary outcome was 30-day point prevalence abstinence (ppa) at 3 and 6 months. "Assigned" intervention use was assessed with automated tracking data. Assessment of "non-assigned" treatments included pharmacotherapy, behavioral, alternative, and non-study Internet treatments. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression models examined whether non-assigned treatment use was associated with 30-day ppa. About 70% of participants used at least one non-assigned treatment. A higher rate of non-study Internet treatment among BI participants was the only treatment group difference at both 3 and 6 months. Multivariate models controlling for condition and baseline predictors of non-assigned treatment use showed that high-intensity non-study Internet treatment was positively associated with 30-day ppa at 3 and 6 months, and pharmacotherapy and behavioral treatment use was negatively associated with 30-day ppa at 6 months. Non-assigned treatment use is an important factor to consider in evaluating Internet cessation interventions. Results highlight methodological issues in selecting a comparison condition. Researchers should report non-assigned treatment use alongside main trial outcomes.Nicotine & Tobacco Research 05/2014; 16(10). DOI:10.1093/ntr/ntu066 · 2.48 Impact Factor