3077.0: Monday, November 13, 2000 - Table 3

Abstract #10261

Evaluating tobacco cessation efforts in a large health organization

Michael Burgoon, PhD, Eusebio Alvaro, PhD, MPH, Rachel Smith, MA, Annette McCarthy, BA, Darcie Yakimura, BA, Vickie Denning, MA, Laura Roberts, MA, James Patrick Willey, Kathy Broneck, BA, and Joseph Grandpre, PhD, MPH. Health Communication Research Office, Arizona Cancer Center, University of Arizona, 1522 E. Drachman St, Tucson, AZ 85721

This report reviews the implementation and preliminary outcomes of a study designed to assess the impact of a smoking disincentive program instituted in a large southwestern hospital with 3200 staff members. The organization in question imposed a $20 monthly health insurance penalty for employees who either smoked or had a smoking dependent-a measure that initially resulted in much debate and dissatisfaction among smoking employees. The goal of the current study is to assess mechanisms by which initial employee dissatisfaction can be overcome and by which smoking cessation may be encouraged in a large health care organization. The current report focuses on the preliminary outcomes from the first year of this three-year study. As part of Phase 1 of this study, researchers delivered monthly flyers to all employees encouraging participation in various health promotion activities and screenings. A system was employed to track staff members' participation in the monthly activities as well as their use of the organization's Wellness Center. Year 1 project activities and outcomes were also assessed via baseline and year-end questionnaires administered to all 3200 staff members. Preliminary results include: approximately 500 employees use tobacco, monthly health promotion activities encouraged participation among those not already utilizing extant health and wellness resources, and that tobacco users respond best to non-tobacco related health activities-as opposed to efforts directly targeting tobacco cessation as an explicit goal. The implications of these and other findings for organizations making similar policy changes will be discussed.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, session participants will be able to: 1. Discuss the main challenges of implementing tobacco cessation efforts in a large health organization. 2. Provide a brief review of past tobacco cessation interventions in health organizations. 3. Summarize the preliminary findings of the intervention efforts associated with the current project. During the session: 1. Approaches to encouraging tobacco cessation will de discussed. 2. Discussion will address the development and implementation of an intervention for tobacco cessation in an organizational context

Keywords: Health Communications, Tobacco

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: None
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA