Purpose The psychological and social factors associated with smoking initiation and continuation are different for young and adult smokers. Before 2005, there were no population-based smoking cessation interventions targeting young smokers in Hong Kong, China. This study describes the processes and outcomes of an individualized “Youth Quitline” service for young Hong Kong Chinese smokers over a 10-year period. Methods A retrospective population-based study was conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of the Quitline and identify the predictors of quitting. Telephone records were used to obtain information of each call. Young smokers of the Quitline completed a questionnaire at baseline and 6-month follow-up. Data were collected between August 2005 and August 2015. Results Over the 10-year period, the Youth Quitline received 7,720 telephone inquiries and provided smoking cessation counseling to 1,684 young smokers. At the 6-month follow-up, 16.9% had reduced cigarette consumption by more than 50%, 33.8% had tried quitting, and 23.6% had successfully quit smoking. Logistic regression analyses indicated that 7 factors, including (1) age; (2) daily cigarette consumption; (3) level of nicotine dependence; (4) intention to quit; (5) having made at least one quit attempt; (6) level of self-efficacy; and (7) adherence to telephone counseling, significantly predicted smoking cessation at 6 months. Conclusions During the first 10 years of the Youth Quitline, we trained many youths to become smoking cessation peer counselors. The Youth Quitline successfully increased youths' awareness of the risks of smoking and smoking cessation services and provided individualized smoking cessation counseling services to young smokers.
- Peer counseling
- Smoking cessation service
- Young smokers
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
- Psychiatry and Mental health