A recent publication of the Cochrane Tobacco Addition Group sheds promise on text-based smoking cessation programs. A systematic review of patients enrolled in five US and UK based clinical trials involving text-based programs for patients enrolled in Smoking Cessation revealed that participants were significantly more likely to be non-smokers at six months than those in the study’s control group.
The study followed more than 9,000 smokers, comparing success across multiple different methods of quitting smoking. After six months, nine percent of the smokers within the text-based smoking cessation program were still smoke-free, this success rate is consistent with more traditional face-to-face smoking cessation programs.
The value of smoking cessation support programs across a text message platform, if effectiveness is indeed equivalent, is that it is lower in cost for the health system and more accessible to patients in rural areas.