Online Program

A Population-based Smartphone Survey on Tobacco Use

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Naomi Freedner-Maguire, MPH, ICF International, Burlington, VT
James Dayton, MBA, ICF International, Burlington, VT
Sean Hu, DrPH, MPH, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA
Linda Neff, PhD, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA
Smartphone web access is rapid, convenient, and confidential, features that support a compelling rationale for using smartphone technology to engage respondents in ongoing public health surveillance.  The purpose of this feasibility study was to assess the use of smartphones as a mode for administering a population-based web survey about tobacco use behaviors. Starting with a national sampling frame of 25,000 random-digit-dial cell phone numbers, we successfully screened a sample of 1,446 respondents aged 18 to 65 years for eligibility to participate in the study.  1,068 respondents were identified as eligible as smartphone users, of whom 528 (49%) agreed to participate in the study.   Study participants were texted links to complete two brief web surveys over the course of two weeks. Smartphone survey data were compared to National Adult Tobacco Survey (NATS) landline and cell phone data. Specifically, we 1) examined demographic characteristics of respondents were examined using pairwise contingency tables; 2) examined the bivariate relationship between survey modes and tobacco use behaviors; and 3) developed logistic regression models for each type of tobacco use, adjusting for age and race/ethnicity,  to examine whether survey mode affected responses. Smartphone respondents reported significantly lower odds of using cigarettes, cigars, e-cigarettes and water pipes than those in the NATS cell phone survey, but the only difference observed between the smartphone and NATS landline surveys was reported use of cigars. The study findings provide insights into the feasibility of using smartphones in public health surveillance. We conclude that it is possible to conduct a population-based tobacco-related interview with respondents by smartphone, however, additional studies are needed to ascertain the validity and reliability of outcome data obtained using smartphone surveys to assess tobacco use behaviors.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Explain rationale for using smartphones for data collection Compare results obtained via smartphone to those obtained via RDD surveys Assess feasibility of using smartphones inpublic health surveillance

Keyword(s): Tobacco Use, Data Collection and Surveillance

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have worked in the public health survey research field for 15 years, providing support to Federal, state, and local government agencies on survey, evaluation, and research projects. I lead the development of study designs and oversee data collection for many state, local and national health surveys, including the National Adult Tobacco Survey, on which this pilot is based.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.