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  • Do fear appeals work? Using Twitter to evaluate emotion in CDC's Tips from Former Smokers

    Szczypka G. Oral presentation at the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco (SRNT), Podium Session 4, Paper Session 21, Friday, February 27.

  • Do Partial Home Smoking Bans Signal Progress toward a Smoke-Free Home?

    Understanding who establishes partial home smoking bans, what these bans cover, and whether they are an intermediate step in going smoke-free would help to inform smoke-free home interventions. Participants were recruited from United Way of Greater Atlanta's 2-1-1 contact center. Data were collected at baseline, 3 and 6 months via telephone interview. Participants (n = 375) were mostly African American (84.2%) and female (84.3%). The majority (58.5%) had annual household incomes <$10 000. At baseline, 61.3% reported a partial smoking ban and 38.7% reported no ban. Existence of a partial ban as compared with no ban was associated with being female, having more than a high school education, being married and younger age. Partial bans most often meant smoking was allowed only in designated rooms (52.6%). Other common rules included: no smoking in the presence of children (18.4%) and smoking allowed only in combination with actions such as opening a window or running a fan (9.8%). A higher percentage of households with partial bans at baseline were smoke-free at 6 months (36.5%) compared with households with no bans at baseline (22.1%). Households with partial smoking bans may have a higher level of readiness to go smoke-free than households with no restrictions.

  • Do smokers support smoke-free laws to help themselves quit smoking? Findings from a longitudinal study

    Background A growing number of smokers support smoke-free laws. The theory of self-control provides one possible explanation for why smokers support laws that would restrict their own behaviour: the laws could serve as a self-control device for smokers who are trying to quit.Objective To test the hypothesis that support for smoke-free laws predicts smoking cessation.Methods We used longitudinal data (1999–2000) from a US national sample of adult smokers (n=6415) from the Current Population Survey, Tobacco Use Supplements. At baseline, smokers were asked whether they made a quit attempt in the past year. They were also asked whether they thought smoking should not be allowed in hospitals, indoor sporting events, indoor shopping malls, indoor work areas, restaurants, or bars and cocktail lounges. At 1-year follow-up, smokers were asked whether they had quit smoking.Findings Smokers who supported smoke-free laws were more likely to have made a recent quit attempt. At 1-year follow-up, those who supported smoke-free laws in 4–6 venues were more likely to have quit smoking (14.8%) than smokers who supported smoke-free laws in 1–3 venues (10.6%) or smokers who supported smoke-free laws in none of the venues (8.0%). These differences were statistically significant in multivariate analyses controlling for demographics.Conclusions Support for smoke-free laws among smokers correlates with past quit attempts and predicts future quitting. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that some smokers support smoke-free laws because the laws could help them quit smoking.

  • Do State Minimum Markup/Price Laws Work? Evidence from Retail Scanner Data and TUS-CPS

    Background: Minimum markup/price laws (MPLs) have been proposed as an alternative non-tax pricing strategy to reduce tobacco use and access. However, the empirical evidence on the effectiveness of MPLs in increasing cigarette prices is very limited. This study aims to fill this critical gap by examining the association between MPLs and cigarette prices. Methods: State MPLs were compiled from primary legal research databases and were linked to cigarette prices constructed from the Nielsen retail scanner data and the self-reported cigarette prices from the Tobacco Use Supplement to the Current Population Survey. Multivariate regression analyses were conducted to examine the association between MPLs and the major components of MPLs and cigarette prices. Results: The presence of MPLs was associated with higher cigarette prices. In addition, cigarette prices were higher, above and beyond the higher prices resulting from MPLs, in states that prohibit below-cost combination sales; do not allow any distributing party to use trade discounts to reduce the base cost of cigarettes; prohibit distributing parties from meeting the price of a competitor, and prohibit distributing below-cost coupons to the consumer. Moreover, states that had total markup rates >24% were associated with significantly higher cigarette prices. Conclusions: MPLs are an effective way to increase cigarette prices. The impact of MPLs can be further strengthened by imposing greater markup rates and by prohibiting coupon distribution, competitor price matching, and use of below-cost combination sales and trade discounts.

  • Dual use and quitting behavior among users of traditional cigarettes

    SRNT, Chicago, IL, 2016. Emery S, Tran H, Kim Y, Huang J. Dual use and quitting behavior among users of traditional cigarettes. Paper Session #3, Podium Presentation #1, Thursday, March 3.

  • E-Cigarette Taxation: Potential Impact & Options

    Chaloupka FJ, Huang J, Emery SL. Presentation at SRNT 2016.

  • Earned media and public engagement with the CDC 'Tips from Former Smokers' Campaign: An analysis of online news and blog coverage.

  • Effects of advertisements on smokers' interest in trying e-cigarettes: The roles of product comparisons and visual cues

    Introduction Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) are battery-powered nicotine delivery devices that have become popular among smokers. We conducted an experiment to understand adult smokers’ responses to e-cigarette advertisements and investigate the impact of ads’ arguments and imagery. Methods A US national sample of smokers who had never tried e-cigarettes (n=3253) participated in a between-subjects experiment. Smokers viewed an online advertisement promoting e-cigarettes using one of three comparison types (emphasising similarity to regular cigarettes, differences or neither) with one of three images, for nine conditions total. Smokers then indicated their interest in trying e-cigarettes. Results Ads that emphasised differences between e-cigarettes and regular cigarettes elicited more interest than ads without comparisons (p<0.01), primarily due to claims about e-cigarettes’ lower cost, greater healthfulness and utility for smoking cessation. However, ads that emphasised the similarities of the products did not differ from ads without comparisons. Ads showing a person using an e-cigarette created more interest than ads showing a person without an e-cigarette (p<0.01). Conclusions Interest in trying e-cigarettes was highest after viewing ads with messages about differences between regular and electronic cigarettes and ads showing product use. If e-cigarettes prove to be harmful or ineffective cessation devices, regulators might restrict images of e-cigarette use in advertising, and public health messages should not emphasise differences between regular and electronic cigarettes.

  • Efficient sampling strategy for SVM through semi-supervised active learning

    Shi Y, Kim Y, Kostygina G, Emery S (2016, August). Efficient sampling strategy for SVM through semi-supervised active learning. Presented at the Joint Statistical Meeting, Chicago, IL.

  • Efficient sampling strategy for SVM through semi-supervised active learning

    Shi Y, Emery S et al. (2017, April). Efficient sampling strategy for SVM through semi-supervised active learning. UPenn TCORS Lecture Series, Philadelphia, PA.