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The 13th World Conference on Tobacco OR Health
Building capacity for a tobacco-free world
July 12-15, 2006, Washington, DC, USA
Objective: Ethnic minority smokers are often underrepresented in clinical trials of tobacco cessation treatments, and there is little direct evidence that they benefit from the treatments being tested. We will demonstrate that they are calling a quitline in large numbers and that they can, in fact, derive a significant benefit from telephone counseling. We also discuss successful strategies for reaching and treating tobacco-using members of these communities.
Methods: (1) California Smokers' Helpline data were compared to survey data to determine reach with respect to ethnic minority representation. (2) Efficacy was determined by aggregating results from five large, randomized, controlled trials performed by the Helpline under similar quality control conditions, which yielded sufficiently large samples of African-American (AA, n=1,210) and Hispanic/Latino (HL, n=1,361) participants for analysis. (3) In a separate study, 393 American Indian (AI) participants were followed up to provide detailed information on their quitline experience.
Results: Ethnic minority smokers are well represented among Helpline callers, showing the potential of quitlines to address treatment disparities. In the trials, AA and HL participants randomly assigned to multi-session counseling were significantly more likely to quit than those assigned to a control: 6-month continuous abstinence rates were 23.3% and 15.1% for AA and 26.0% and 16.1% for HL (all p's<0.001). These data provide solid evidence of the efficacy of quitline counseling for these groups. The AI sample in the trials was too small to make efficacy claims, but the additional AI study provides data suggesting the feasibility and acceptability of quitlines for this group.