Effectiveness of a minimal contact smoking cessation program for Dutch general practitioners: a randomized controlled trial

Prev Med. 2001 Feb;32(2):182-90. doi: 10.1006/pmed.2000.0791.


Background: Until recently, Dutch general practitioners contributed little to tobacco control. This is due to several factors, among which is the lack of a feasible intervention program for adult smokers. Such a minimal contact behavioral intervention, using the Stage-of-Change concept, is now available. Effectiveness was tested in a randomized trial.

Method: Twenty-two general practitioners and their practice assistants were trained in applying the program. In all, 530 smoking patients were enrolled, randomly assigned to either the intervention or the usual treatment condition. Analysis of treatment effects was performed with logistic regression analysis. In a backward stepwise procedure confounding effects of baseline differences were eliminated.

Results: At 12-month follow-up, self-reported abstinence rates (including nonrespondents as smokers) differed significantly between intervention subjects and controls: 13.4 vs 7.3% point prevalence (odds ratio 1.51, P < 0.05). An analysis of consecutive abstinence, defined as being abstinent at both 6- and 12-month follow-up, showed that 8.2% of the intervention group compared to 3.1% of the controls had sustained abstinence for more than 6 months (odds ratio 3.04, P < 0.001).

Conclusions: Results indicate that an effective smoking cessation program for use in Dutch general practice, already shown to be feasible, is now available. Outcomes are generally consistent with recent international literature.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Chewing Gum
  • Family Practice*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Netherlands
  • Nicotine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Nicotine / therapeutic use
  • Odds Ratio
  • Patient Education as Topic
  • Polymethacrylic Acids / therapeutic use
  • Polyvinyls / therapeutic use
  • Smoking Cessation / methods*
  • Tobacco Use Cessation Devices


  • Chewing Gum
  • Polymethacrylic Acids
  • Polyvinyls
  • Nicotine