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Impacts of a Smoking Cessation Benefit Among Employed Populations

Halpern, Michael T. MD, PhD; Dirani, Riad PhD; Schmier, Jordana K. MA

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: January 2007 - Volume 49 - Issue 1 - p 11-21
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e31802db579
Original Articles

Objective: The objective of this study was to project the health and economic impacts of providing a workplace smoking cessation benefit.

Methods: The authors conducted an update of a previously published outcomes model using recently published data and clinical trial results.

Results: In four example workplace types evaluated, coverage of a cessation benefit resulted in greater numbers of successful cessations and decreased rates of smoking-related diseases. Total savings from benefit coverage (decreased healthcare and workplace costs) exceeded costs of the benefit within 4 years. Total savings per smoker ranged from $350 to $582 at 10 years and $1152 to $1743 at 20 years. Internal rate of return ranged from 39% to 60% at 10 years.

Conclusion: Providing a workplace smoking cessation benefit results in substantial health and economic benefits with economic savings exceeding the cost of the benefit within a relatively short period.

Clinical Significance: Providing a workplace smoking cessation benefit is projected to increase the rate of smoking cessation as well as decrease the incidence of smoking-related conditions and healthcare costs. In addition, workplace cessation benefits can result in decreased absenteeism, increased productivity, and net cost savings within 4 years.

From Exponent (Dr Halpern, Ms Schmier), Alexandria, Virginia; and Pfizer (Dr Dirani), New York, NY.

CME Available for this Article at

Dr Halpern is currently affiliated with the American Cancer Society, Atlanta, Georgia.

This study was funded by a research contract from Pfizer.

Views and conclusions presented in this study are the authors’ and are not necessarily those of their organizations.

Address correspondence to: Michael T. Halpern, MD, PhD, Strategic Director, Health Services Research, American Cancer Society, 1599 Clifton Rd. NE, Atlanta, GA 30329; E-mail:

©2007The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine