The purpose of this clinical demonstration project was to increase the reach of effective treatments, such as pharmacotherapy and telephone or web-based support, by offering these treatments in a low cost and convenient manner to a population of Veterans.
Six hundred nine veteran smokers who had served in the military since September 11, 2001 were contacted by invitational letters. Veterans indicating interest in further contacts received telephone calls using standardized scripts that offered referral to the National Cancer Institute's Smoking QuitLine, web-based counseling, and local Department of Veteran Affairs pharmacologic treatment for smoking cessation.
Seven percent of survey recipients participated in the clinical program. At follow-up, 23% of participants providing follow-up information reported maintaining smoking abstinence. This clinical demonstration project was associated with a reach of 8.6% (number of smokers who accessed the intervention/the number of targeted smokers), an efficacy of 26% (number of abstinent smokers at follow-up/number who accessed the intervention), and a 24-hour abstinence impact rate of 2.2% (number of smokers with 24-hour abstinence/number of targeted smokers).
Results suggested that this project enhanced access to care and promoted short-term smoking cessation in Veterans who have served since September 11. 2001.
From the Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center (DEZ, EAD, KS-T, SL, SMW, PSC, SDM, SA, JCB), Durham, NC; Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences (EAD, KS-T, SMW, PSC, SDM, SA, JCB), Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC; Veterans Affairs VISN 6 Mental Illness Research, Education, and Clinical Center (EAD, KS-T, SMW, PSC, SDM, SA, JCB), Durham, NC; and Veterans Health Administration (KWH-B), Public Health Care Strategic Health Care Group, WA.
Received for publication September 30, 2009; accepted March 3, 2010.
Send correspondence and reprint requests to Eric Dedert, PhD, Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, 508 Fulton Street (116 B), Durham, NC 27705. e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Supported by the VA Public Health Strategic Health Care Group, 2K24DA016388, the VISN 6 Mental Illness Research Education and Clinical Center (MIRECC), the Office of Research and Development Clinical Science, Department of Veterans Affairs, 2R01CA081595, 3R01CA81595-07S1, and R21DA019704.
The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the funding agencies.
The authors declare no conflict of interest.