Acceptability of computer assessments among ethnically diverse, low- income smokers

Beth Bock, Raymond Niaura, Alicia Fontes, Frederick Bock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Purpose. To examine the acceptability of computer-based assessments among an ethnically diverse, low-income population of primary care patients. Although computers have been used to provide assessments and interventions in health care settings, members of ethnic minority and low-income households have less access to computers than other groups, and therefore the acceptability of computers as a health care assessment and delivery tool needs to be examined. Design. We examined the acceptability of computers for providing assessments of smoking history, nicotine dependence, and other related variables among an ethnically diverse, low-income primary care population. No intervention was used in this study. Setting. Three inner- city primary care clinics located in hospitals were used as sites for this study. These hospitals were located in areas of the city where low-income and ethnic minority households are overrepresented relative to the total population. Subjects. Adult male and female smokers (n = 522) were recruited while awaiting appointments in each primary care clinic. Measures. A questionnaire assessing smoking rate, patterns, history, motivation to quit smoking, and other smoking-related variables was administered using either a paper-and-pencil format or a laptop computer. Results. Frequency counts, analysis of variance, and χ2 tests were used where appropriate. Most subjects (78.5 %) used the computer to complete the baseline survey. Almost all subjects (92 %) rated the computer 'very easy' or 'easy' to use. Subjects who were Spanish-speaking, were born outside the United States, or were Hispanic tended to rate the program as slightly less easy to use than other subjects. Conclusions. Computer-based assessments appear highly acceptable to individuals in low-income populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)299-304
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Health Promotion
Volume13
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1999

Keywords

  • Assessments
  • Computers
  • Low-Income
  • Minority
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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