Proactive recruitment of cancer patients' social networks into a smoking cessation trial.
BACKGROUND: This report describes the characteristics associated with successful enrollment of smokers in the social networks (i.e., family and close friends) of patients with lung cancer into a smoking cessation intervention. METHODS: Lung cancer patients from four clinical sites were asked to complete a survey enumerating their family members and close friends who smoke, and provide permission to contact these potential participants. Family members and close friends identified as smokers were interviewed and offered participation in a smoking cessation intervention. Repeated measures logistic regression model examined characteristics associated with enrollment. RESULTS: A total of 1062 eligible lung cancer patients were identified and 516 patients consented and completed the survey. These patients identified 1325 potentially eligible family and close friends. Of these, 496 consented and enrolled in the smoking cessation program. Network enrollment was highest among patients who were white and had late-stage disease. Social network members enrolled were most likely to be female, a birth family, immediate family, or close friend, and live in close geographic proximity to the patient. CONCLUSIONS: Proactive recruitment of smokers in the social networks of lung cancer patients is challenging. In this study, the majority of family members and friends declined to participate. Enlisting immediate female family members and friends, who live close to the patient as agents to proactively recruit other network members into smoking cessation trials could be used to extend reach of cessation interventions to patients' social networks. Moreover, further consideration should be given to the appropriate timing of approaching network smokers to consider cessation.
Bastian, LA; Fish, LJ; Peterson, BL; Biddle, AK; Garst, J; Lyna, P; Molner, S; Bepler, G; Kelley, M; Keefe, FJ; McBride, CM
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