Bmj Usa: Editorial

Tailoring smoking cessation programs to the specific needs and interests of the patient

BMJ 2003; 327 doi: (Published 19 November 2003) Cite this as: BMJ 2003;327:E57
  1. Victor J Strecher (, PhD, MPH professor and associate director, cancer prevention and control,
  2. Wayne F Velicer (, PhD professor and co-director
  1. University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA
  2. Cancer Prevention Research Center, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, Rhode Island, USA

    What's the next generation of research?

    This article originally appeared in BMJ USA

    Ideally, smoking cessation programs should be able to reach a large number of smokers, be effective in achieving long-term abstinence, and achieve these goals at a reasonable cost. Current anti-smoking efforts, unfortunately, have not been able to offer all of these characteristics. Community- and media-based cessation programs (eg, quit contests) have been able to reach a large number of smokers but lack effectiveness.1 On the other hand, intensive, multi-session clinical interventions can achieve relatively high long-term abstinence rates,2 but their reach is limited. Smoking cessation clinics have a limited impact on population cessation rates, and some have even advocated abandoning the clinic approach to cessation.3

    Computer-based smoking cessation interventions hold the promise of combining the benefits of high-reach media-based interventions, individually-oriented clinics, and popular self-help programs.4 5 With the rapid development of computer technology, tailoring a cessation program to the specific needs and …

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