Measuring readiness and motivation to quit smoking among women in public health clinics

Addict Behav. 1994 Sep-Oct;19(5):497-507. doi: 10.1016/0306-4603(94)90005-1.


We conducted a pilot test of an instrument to assess stage of readiness and level of motivation to change smoking behavior among 495 women smokers in public health clinics. The stages of readiness were based on those proposed by Prochaska and DiClemente but with finer discrimination within the precontemplation stage, where a substantial minority (41%) of the target smokers were situated. Subdividing this earliest group, we found that 8% of the total sample planned no change in smoking ever; 8% were seriously thinking of cutting down; and 25% were seriously thinking of quitting but not within 6 months. Scales in the questionnaire included general motivation to change smoking behavior and confidence in one's ability to do so. The women's scores differed on these scales and on action toward quitting across the five stages of readiness, except that the lowest two groups did not differ on confidence. Pregnancy enhanced readiness to quit. The instrument accommodates the brevity and low literacy requirements for use in these applied settings and is suitable for use in either self-administered questionnaire or interview format.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Attitude to Health*
  • Black or African American / psychology
  • Chicago
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Maternal-Child Health Centers
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation*
  • Patient Acceptance of Health Care*
  • Personality Assessment
  • Pregnancy
  • Smoking Cessation / psychology*
  • White People / psychology