Background: Our objective was to explore the relationship between baseline characteristics of hospitalized smokers and 6-month to 2-year self-reported quit rates.
Methods: We surveyed adult smokers (n = 154) admitted to the Medicine service of an urban public hospital. We used the pharmacy database, a follow-up telephone survey, and medical records to characterize nicotine patch use and post-discharge smoking abstinence.
Results: Among the 102 patients for whom smoking status at least 6 months after discharge was known, 18 (18%) were not smoking at last contact (mean follow-up 20 months). Individual factors associated with quitting include confidence to quit within 1 week, stage of change other than precontemplation, filling a nicotine patch prescription after discharge, number of previous quit attempts, and increasing age. With multivariate modeling, only confidence to quit [OR 9.8, confidence interval (CI), 2.8-35.0] and the number of previous quit attempts (OR 1.3 per attempt, 95% CI, 1.0-1.5) remained significantly associated with future abstinence.
Conclusions: A high level of confidence to quit and multiple prior quit attempts are strongly associated with future abstinence among hospitalized patients who smoke. Using a simple confidence-to-quit scale to target interventions to patients with high confidence may improve the effectiveness of smoking cessation programs.