BMJ 2010; 340 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.c2213 (Published 23 April 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c2213

Does the number of free nicotine patches given to smokers affect quit rates? The answer is no. The lure of free nicotine replacement therapy can be a cost effective marketing strategy to persuade smokers to call a telephone quitline, but quit rates for those given four week supplies of patches did not differ significantly from those given six or eight weeks’ supply. An intention to treat analysis of 12 month quit rates found a similar pattern (BMC Public Health 2010;10:181, doi:10.1186/1471-2458-10-181).

An American retrospective cohort study of patients discharged after implantation of a drug eluting coronary stent reports that those who delay filling their first prescription for clopidogrel are putting their lives at risk. One in six patients delayed filling their prescription, with a median delay of three days within the group. Any delay at all was associated with increased risk of heart attack or death (14% v 8% in those who filled prescription on the day of discharge, P<0.001) showing that the transition between hospital …

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