Recruit method has no effect on quitting smoking

SMOKERS actively recruited to the Quitline through methods such as referral from GPs are just as likely to quit smoking as those recruited passively, Australian data shows.

Researchers from the University of Newcastle showed in a meta-analysis of 24 randomised controlled trials that smokers who underwent telephone counselling were around 60% more likely to have a prolonged abstinence from smoking at 6–9 months than those who used self-help materials or nothing.

At 12–18 months, those who had telephone counselling were 40% more likely to have prolonged abstinence from smoking, defined as sustained abstinence for three months or longer.

Smokers who were actively recruited to telephone counselling, or sought it in response to passive means such as mass media, both had a 46% greater chance of achieving prolonged abstinence. Furthermore, the passively and actively recruited smokers were similarly successful in abstaining from smoking, despite