Smoking cessation among African American and white smokers in the veterans affairs health care system

Diana J. Burgess, Michelle Van Ryn, Siamak Noorbaloochi, Barbara Clothier, Brent C. Taylor, Scott Sherman, Anne M. Joseph, Steven S. Fu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives. We examined whether a proactive care smoking cessation intervention designed to overcome barriers to treatment would be especially effective at increasing cessation among African Americans receiving care in the Veterans Health Administration. Methods. We analyzed data from a randomized controlled trial, the Veterans Victory over Tobacco study, involving a population-based electronic registry of current smokers (702 African Americans, 1569 Whites) and assessed 6-month prolonged smoking abstinence at 1 year via a follow-up survey of all current smokers. We also examined candidate risk adjustors for the race effect on smoking abstinence. Results. The interaction between patient race and intervention condition (proactive care vs usual care) was not significant. Overall, African Americans had higher quit rates than Whites (13% vs 9%; P < .006) regardless of condition. Conclusions. African Americans quit at higher rates than Whites. These findings may be a result of the large number of veterans receiving smoking cessation services and the lack of racial differences in receipt of these services as well as racial differences in smoking history, self-efficacy, and motivation to quit that favor African Americans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)S580-S587
JournalAmerican journal of public health
Issue numberSUPPL. 4
StatePublished - Sep 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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