Community smoking cessation contests: an effective public health strategy

Can J Public Health. Mar-Apr 1994;85(2):95-8.


This report describes the follow-up of a community-sponsored smoking cessation contest. The aims of the evaluation were to describe the characteristics of contestants and the quit rates at six weeks, six months and one year. The "Quit to Win" contest was held as part of a larger cancer prevention program in Medicine Hat, Alberta. In order to be eligible for prizes, contestants were required to be smoke-free for six weeks and have their smoking status verified by a "Buddy". Contestants were contacted by telephone at the end of the contest and again at six months and one year. Seventy-five individuals entered the contest. The quit rates, 56%, 27% and 21% at six weeks, six months and one year respectively, compare favourably with other smoking cessation interventions. This study demonstrates that a community-based program can reach a variety of smokers with a relatively simple intervention.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alberta / epidemiology
  • Community Health Services / organization & administration*
  • Competitive Behavior
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation
  • Prevalence
  • Program Evaluation
  • Public Health Administration*
  • Smoking / epidemiology
  • Smoking / psychology
  • Smoking Cessation / methods*
  • Smoking Cessation / psychology
  • Smoking Prevention*