Tobacco control policies are effective in promoting quit attempts and increase the likelihood that smokers use evidence-based cessation treatments (e.g., nicotine replacement therapies (NRT), non-NRT medications, behavioral treatment, and/or quitlines). However, what is less clear is how these policies might differentially impact different groups of smokers, perhaps in some cases even widening disparities in the use of evidence-based tobacco dependence treatments. This paper examined how different state-level tobacco control policies impact the use of evidence-based cessation treatments by race/ethnicity, gender, socio-economic status (SES), age, and smoking history. Participants included 9110 adult smokers reporting a past-year quit attempt within the 2010-2011 Tobacco Use Supplement to the Current Population Survey. Lasso regression modeling was used to identify a subset of interactions between tobacco policies and individual smoker characteristics that predicted use of evidence-based cessation treatment. Significant interactions were fitted via participant-weighted generalized linear models to determine effect sizes and relations to each cessation treatment outcome. Results highlighted that various state level tobacco control policies differentially impacted the reported use of both prescription and non-prescription stop smoking medications by race/ethnicity, age, and SES. The relationship between state level tobacco control policies and the use of behavioral treatments and quitlines did not differ by smoker characteristics. In sum, tobacco control policies differentially impact the use of FDA approved stop smoking medications across different race/ethnicity, age, and SES groups. Understanding such effects can help to target interventions to ensure equal access to evidence-based tobacco dependence treatments.
Prev Med (Preventive medicine)
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