How Online Quit-smoking Programs Reach More Tobacco Users

How Online Quit-smoking Programs Reach More Tobacco Users

To help smokers quit, many employers and health plans still offer programs with phone coaching. Yet the average quitline participant now takes less than two calls.

Why? Because more of today’s tobacco users prefer the convenience of chat, text, email and digital resources available through online quit-smoking programs.

The annual excess cost to employ a smoker is about $6,000 due to increased medical expenses, absenteeism and lost productivity. This makes employers particularly motivated to increase the reach and impact of their quit-smoking program. To achieve this today, it requires new thinking. Online quit-smoking programs can help reach more of today’s tobacco users.

Our new report, Twelve million smokers look online for quit smoking help annually: Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS) data, 2005-2017,” published in Nicotine & Tobacco Research explains why.


Online quit-smoking programs reach more tobacco users

Bottom line: If you only offer a phone-based quit-smoking program, you are missing a sizable portion of tobacco users who prefer the convenience and accessibility of online quit-smoking programs.

Visit our program page for details on proven digital modalities that help smokers quit. Or download “Personalize employee benefits where it matters most” to learn more about the benefits of offering a digital quit-smoking program. 

Sources for infographic:

Graham AL, Amato MS. Twelve million smokers look online for quit smoking help annually: Health Information National Trends Survey (HINTS) data, 2005-2017. Nicotine Tob Res. 2018, 1-4.

Syamlal G, Mazurek JM, Hendricks SA, Jamal A. Cigarette Smoking Trends Among U.S. Working Adult by Industry and Occupation: Findings From the 2004–2012 National Health Interview Survey. Nicotine Tob Research. 2015;17(5):599-606.

Berman M, Crane R, Seiber E, Munur M. Estimating the cost of a smoking employee. Tob Control. 2014 Sep;23(5):428-33.

Jamal A, Phillips E, Gentzke AS, et al. Current Cigarette Smoking Among Adults — United States, 2016. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2018;67:53–59. 

Danaei G, Ding EL, Mozaffarian D, Taylor B, Rehm J, Murray CJ, Ezzati M. The preventable causes of death in the United States: comparative risk assessment of dietary, lifestyle, and metabolic risk factors. PLoS Med. 2009 Apr 28;6(4):e1000058.

Amanda Graham, Ph.D.
Amanda Graham, Ph.D.

Chief of Innovations

As Chief of Innovations, Dr. Amanda Graham leads the Innovations Center within Truth Initiative. The Innovations Center is dedicated to designing and building leading digital products for tobacco cessation, including the EX Program. She is internationally recognized as a thought leader in web and mobile quit-smoking interventions and online social networks and has been awarded over $15 million in research funding. She has published over 100 peer-reviewed manuscripts and serves on National Institutes of Health study sections and numerous journal editorial boards. Graham is Professor of Medicine (adjunct) at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science.

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