Support person interventions to increase use of quitline services among racially diverse low-income smokers: A pilot study

Christi A. Patten, Steven Fu, Katrina Vickerman, Martha J. Bock, David Nelson, Shu Hong Zhu, Joyce E. Balls-Berry, Alula Jimenez Torres, Tabetha A. Brockman, Christine A. Hughes, Abigail E. Klein, Miguel Valdez-Soto, Paula A. Keller

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4 Scopus citations


Introduction: Social support from nonsmokers may have a role in prompting smokers to use evidence-based cessation treatment. Prior studies found that an intervention for nonsmoking support persons (SPs) was effective for promoting smokers' use of free, state quitline services. This pilot study adapted and assessed feasibility of this intervention for a racially diverse, low-income population. Methods: Single group, non-randomized design enrolling SP-smoker dyads with low income status enrolled in one of three study “waves” of 10 pairs each. Participants were recruited using flyers and in-person outreach methods. The SP intervention included a 1-session coaching call and written materials; study waves 2 and 3 also included text messaging and a monetary incentive for smokers who used quitline services. Using content analysis, the intervention was iteratively adapted based on SP feedback. Baseline measures assessed socio-demographics, dyad and tobacco use characteristics. Follow-up assessments were conducted among SPs at 1-month follow-up and among smokers at 3-months follow-up. Feasibility indicators were recruitment, retention, and SP intervention acceptability and adherence. Secondary outcomes were smokers' use of any quitline service verified by quitline staff and 7-day, point prevalence, biochemically verified smoking abstinence at 3 months. Results: Recruitment of 30 dyads was feasible; in-person recruitment methods were the most successful. SPs who completed follow-up assessments found the intervention acceptable, suggesting only minor content modifications, and they perceived the quitline information as novel. But the study had some feasibility challenges (e.g., SP coaching call completion: 60% and SP study retention: 53%). At 3 months, 2 smokers (7%) had used any quitline service and 13% were biochemically confirmed smoking abstinent. Conclusions: This pilot study demonstrated feasibility of recruiting SP-smoker dyads from diverse, low-income communities. While the intervention was well received, its delivery was not feasible in this population. Results suggest that further consumer adaptation of the intervention is needed among both SPs and smokers.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100171
JournalAddictive Behaviors Reports
StatePublished - Jun 2019


  • Intervention
  • Low-income
  • Smoking
  • Social support
  • Treatment


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