Influence of recent tobacco control policies and campaigns on Quitline call volume in Korea
E Hwa Yun 1,2
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Graduate School of Cancer Science and Policy, National Cancer Center, Korea, Republic of
National Cancer Control Institute, National Cancer Center, Korea, Republic of
Publication date: 2018-03-01
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2018;16(Suppl 1):A837
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Many tobacco control policies and media campaigns have recently been adopted and implemented in Korea. The effectiveness of these policies and campaigns can be measured by monitoring the inbound call volume of the Quitline, which has been in operation since 2006.

We reviewed Korean government documents and regulations originating between 2007 and 2016 to summarize tobacco control policies and mass media campaigns. The corresponding incoming call volumes of the Quitline were monitored over the same periods and compared with the baseline call volumes in 2007 and 2008.

Peak call volume occurred from October 2010 to March 2011, when the Quitline was directly promoted on television; during these periods, the volumes were 2.5 and 5.2 times higher than the average monthly call volumes in 2007 and 2008, respectively. A relatively gradual upward trend in call volume was found from 2013 to 2016, when the Quitline number was included on cigarette packs, a fear-oriented anti-tobacco campaign appeared in the mass media, and a tax increase on tobacco was implemented; average monthly call volume was approximately 4- 5 times higher than those in in 2007 and 2008.

It appears that the continuous efforts to add up of tobacco control policies in the context of a nationwide anti-tobacco mass media campaign that includes the Quitline number is the most effective approach to maintaining the upward trend in smoking cessation intentions. Based on the Korean experience, Quitline data may be useful for measuring the impact of tobacco control policies and campaigns in Asian Pacific countries.

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