NCI to study effectiveness of text-based smoking cessation intervention program

The National Cancer Institute wants to assess the efficacy of SmokefreeTXT, a text message smoking cessation intervention program designed for smokers aged 18-29, according to a Jan. 14 Federal Register announcement. NCI will recruit a large sample of young adult smokers to examine how exposure to the SmokefreeTXT program affects participants' success.

Participants will be enrolled for a maximum of 8 weeks of treatment in the SmokefreeTXT program, with the frequency and duration of the treatment varying. The study will collect self-reported cessation data using a bidirectional text-messaging service and five web-based surveys. All web-based survey data will be collected and stored by a third party.

Developed and managed by NCI's Tobacco Control Research Branch, the SmokefreeTXT program is a component of a larger series of eHealth/mHealth tobacco cessation intervention programs. Launched in December 2011, the program is relatively simple--participants choose a quit date and get motivational messages leading up to the date and for weeks after that.

According to a recently released review of evidence from five studies, mobile phone-based interventions are an effective method for helping smokers to quit. The interventions included in the review primarily used text messaging via mobile phones to provide motivational messages, support and tips for stopping smoking, resulting in people being more likely to stay away from cigarettes over a six-month period. 

To learn more:
- read the announcement