Collaborative Group Brings Synergy to Youth Smoking-Cessation Efforts

From 1998 to 2003, the Center for the Advancement of Health, Washington, convened the Youth Tobacco Cessation Collaborative whose aim is to coordinate the efforts of major national funders involved in designing and disseminating effective youth cessation programs.

The results of this work were disseminated in 2007 by the Washington-based Academy for Educational Development.

Key Results

  • The collaborative developed a National Blueprint for Action, a consensus document that provides a framework to guide discussions among the funders; reflect their common goals and objectives; and address the full spectrum of research, surveillance and practice gaps.
  • The collaborative commissioned a survey of existing youth tobacco cessation programs by the Academy for Educational Development, an independent, nonprofit organization committed to solving critical social problems in the United States.
  • The collaborative conducted a comprehensive review of the last 25 years of research on adolescent and young adult tobacco use and cessation. The analysis of 66 tobacco cessation intervention studies revealed the following information:
    • The average quit rate among the programs was 12 percent.
    • Programs that enhanced motivation had higher quit rates.
    • Classroom-based programs had the highest quit rate at 17 percent, although computer-based programs also had above average quit rates at 13 percent.
  • The collaborative established a new program—Helping Young Smokers Quit: Identifying Best Practices for Tobacco Cessation—that identifies, surveys and evaluates existing youth tobacco cessation programs in a representative sample of 408 communities in the United States.
  • Members of the collaborative have funded jointly and collaborated on a variety of research projects and programs totaling over $200 million to meet the objectives of the blueprint.
  • In August 2007, through the project run by the Academy for Educational Development, the American Journal of Public Health published a theme issue on young adult tobacco cessation reporting findings from various projects coordinated by members of the collaborative.