HHS Launches Text-Messaging Based Smoking Cessation Resources

Sep 20, 2011, 7:16 PM, Posted by NewPublicHealth

On the same day that a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) task force released recommendations on health text messaging, HHS also announced some new text messaging smoking cessation resources:

  • The National Cancer Institute launched the SmokeFreeTXT program, a mobile smoking cessation service designed for teens and young adults. Users enroll at the site to begin receiving the text messages.
  • NCI is also launching QuitNowTXT, aimed at adults, which offers text messages that provide tips, motivation, encouragement and smoking and cessation facts based on information tailored to a user’s responses. The program offers a text message library for health departments, academic institutions and government agencies to pull from.

“Mobile device texting initiatives [like these] have the potential to be a powerful tool to support tobacco cessation globally,” says HHS Chief Technology Officer Todd Park. “Text messaging is widely available, inexpensive, and allows for immediate delivery of cessation information.”

This commentary originally appeared on the RWJF New Public Health blog.