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Title: Use of smartphone-based interventions to support smoking cessation and pharmacotherapy use
Author: Herbeć, Aleksandra Agata
ISNI:       0000 0004 7964 8896
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2019
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This thesis reports findings from seven studies to develop and provide a preliminary evaluation of three smartphone apps tackling a different aspect of quitting. Study 1 was a pragmatic randomised controlled trial (RCT) of the NRT2Quit app that focused on improving adherence to nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) during quitting. Due to slow recruitment, the study was terminated early, but there was some evidence that the app could aid cessation. Study 2 was a theory-informed qualitative study of smokers' and ex-smokers' use of NRT, which identified barriers in capability, opportunity and motivation to NRT use and engagement with support on NRT use, which could also explain the poor recruitment into the NRT2Quit trial. Study 3 was a think-aloud study about NRT2Quit that showed that smokers were interested in the advice offered within the app, but preferred more comprehensive support, including craving management tools (CMTs). Study 4 was a pragmatic RCT of the BupaQuit app that offered CMTs versus an app version without them and found no detectable impact on cessation and several challenges to conducting pragmatic RCTs of apps. Study 5 identified barriers to verification of abstinence in such trials using personal carbon monoxide (CO) monitors. Study 6 involved follow-up interviews with the BupaQuit trial participants and found that while they were interested in CMTs, the app failed to meet their perceived needs, and many used unassigned cessation support. Study 7 used a mixed-methods approach to explore smokers' views on personal, smartphone-enabled CO monitors and associated apps, which found that smokers were interested in such support but also highlighted challenges for the development and evaluation of such programmes. This PhD suggests that smokers can articulate a number of desired features in cessation apps, but making these appealing, engaging and effective remains a major challenge, and many barriers exist to appropriate evaluation.
Supervisor: West, R. ; Shahab, L. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available