Identifying and Responding to Technical Assistance and Training Needs in Tobacco Prevention and Control

American Legacy Foundation, Washington, DC, USA.
Health Promotion Practice (Impact Factor: 0.55). 08/2004; 5(3 Suppl):159S-166S. DOI: 10.1177/1524839904264626
Source: PubMed


The Master Settlement Agreement generated expectations that significant, long-term funding would be available to the 46 participating states in reparation for the health costs incurred by tobacco use. Facing intense pressure to use anticipated funds for effective programming, states and national organizations considered how to supply the technical assistance and training at the state and local levels. This article reviews assessments by the American Legacy Foundation, the Tobacco Technical Assistance Consortium, and selected states of the current needs for support, technical assistance, and training in tobacco prevention and control. Key findings indicated the need for information, information exchange, mentoring, and training targeted to new staff, with advanced skill sets for experienced staff. As future funding is uncertain, all these organizations are exploring innovative ways to maintain infrastructure and programming at the state and local levels. Training and technical assistance can be the solution to sustaining impetus in the movement.

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    • "staff and coalition members statewide. Providing comprehensive technical assistance and training became a significant challenge (Thornton et al., 2004). This challenge was particularly formidable in large land mass states like Colorado, where great physical and geographic distances exist between state public health agencies and the communities they serve. "
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    ABSTRACT: In 1998 the tobacco industry was released of claims that provided monetary relief for states. A significant expansion of tobacco control activity in many states created a need to develop local capacity. Technical assistance and training for new and experienced staff became a significant challenge for tobacco control leadership. In Colorado, this challenge was addressed in part through the development of a technical assistance and training Web site designed for local tobacco control staff and coalition members. Researchers, technical Web site development specialists, state health agency, and state tobacco control coalition staff collaborated to develop, promote, and test the efficacy of this Web site. The work group embodied a range of skills including tobacco control, Web site technical development, marketing, training, and project management. Persistent marketing, updating of Web site content, and institutionalizing it as a principal source of information and training were key to use by community coalition members.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2006 · Health Promotion Practice
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    ABSTRACT: Immediately following the Master Settlement Agreement of 1998 and the corresponding growth of new and existing tobacco control programs, it became clear that tobacco prevention and control organizations required technical assistance to help them carry out their missions. The Tobacco Technical Assistance Consortium (TTAC) was established at the Rollins School of Public Health in 2001 to provide tailored technical assistance services to meet the needs of the expanded workforce and to build tobacco control capacity. To understand whether and how TTAC's technical assistance enhanced capacity, TTAC conducted an evaluation of its services through semi-structured telephone interviews with the primary contacts and one to two additional informants for each of 48 technical assistance services provided over an 18-month period. The majority of respondents reported they had increased knowledge and skills in tobacco control, strengthened leadership skills, developed or strengthened partnerships with other tobacco control organizations, and changed the way they practice tobacco control following the assistance. More modest improvements were noted in the areas of increased organizational support and policy change at the local or state level.
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    ABSTRACT: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has administered the Prevention Research Centers Program since 1986. We quantified the number and reach of training programs across all centers, determined whether the centers' outcomes varied by characteristics of the academic institution, and explored potential benefits of training and technical assistance for academic researchers and community partners. We characterized how these activities enhanced capacity building within Prevention Research Centers and the community. The program office collected quantitative information on training across all 33 centers via its Internet-based system from April through December 2007. Qualitative data were collected from April through May 2007. We selected 9 centers each for 2 separate, semistructured, telephone interviews, 1 on training and 1 on technical assistance. Across 24 centers, 4,777 people were trained in 99 training programs in fiscal year 2007 (October 1, 2006-September 30, 2007). Nearly 30% of people trained were community members or agency representatives. Training and technical assistance activities provided opportunities to enhance community partners' capacity in areas such as conducting needs assessments and writing grants and to improve the centers' capacity for cultural competency. Both qualitative and quantitative data demonstrated that training and technical assistance activities can foster capacity building and provide a reciprocal venue to support researchers' and the community's research interests. Future evaluation could assess community and public health partners' perception of centers' training programs and technical assistance.
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