Financial incentives for abstinence among socioeconomically disadvantaged individuals in smoking cessation treatment. Academic Article uri icon


  • OBJECTIVES: We evaluated the effectiveness of offering adjunctive financial incentives for abstinence (contingency management [CM]) within a safety net hospital smoking cessation program. METHODS: We randomized participants (n=146) from a Dallas County, Texas, Tobacco Cessation Clinic from 2011 to 2013 to usual care (UC; cessation program; n=71) or CM (UC + 4 weeks of financial incentives; n=75), and followed from 1 week before the quit date through 4 weeks after the quit date. A subset (n=128) was asked to attend a visit 12 weeks after the scheduled quit date. RESULTS: Participants were primarily Black (62.3%) or White (28.1%) and female (57.5%). Most participants were uninsured (52.1%) and had an annual household income of less than $12000 (55.5%). Abstinence rates were significantly higher for those assigned to CM than UC at all visits following the quit date (all Ps<.05). Point prevalence abstinence rates in the CM and UC groups were 49.3% versus 25.4% at 4 weeks after the quit date and 32.8% versus 14.1% at 12 weeks after the quit date. CM participants earned an average of $63.40 ($150 possible) for abstinence during the first 4 weeks after the scheduled quit date. CONCLUSIONS: Offering small financial incentives for abstinence might be an effective means to improve abstinence rates among socioeconomically disadvantaged individuals participating in smoking cessation treatment.

published proceedings

  • Am J Public Health

altmetric score

  • 128.85

author list (cited authors)

  • Kendzor, D. E., Businelle, M. S., Poonawalla, I. B., Cuate, E. L., Kesh, A., Rios, D. M., Ma, P., & Balis, D. S.

citation count

  • 51

complete list of authors

  • Kendzor, Darla E||Businelle, Michael S||Poonawalla, Insiya B||Cuate, Erica L||Kesh, Anshula||Rios, Debra M||Ma, Ping||Balis, David S

publication date

  • June 2015