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The impact of anti-tobacco industry prevention messages in tobacco producing regions: evidence from the US truth® campaign
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  1. J F Thrasher1,2,
  2. J Niederdeppe2,
  3. M C Farrelly2,
  4. K C Davis2,
  5. K M Ribisl1,
  6. M L Haviland3
  1. 1Department of Health Behavior and Health Education, School of Public Health, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA
  2. 2RTI International, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, USA
  3. 3American Legacy Foundation, Washington DC, USA
  1. Correspondence to:
 James F Thrasher
 MS, MA, 311 Rosenau Hall, Department of Health Behavior and Health Education, CB#7440, School of Public Health, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7440, USA; thrasheremail.unc.edu

Abstract

Background: Adolescents who live in tobacco producing regions may not respond favourably to anti-industry ads.

Objective: To examine whether state level involvement in tobacco production appears to limit the effectiveness of anti-industry ads to prevent tobacco use among adolescents in the USA.

Design: Time trend analyses were done using repeated cross sectional data from six waves of the Legacy Media Tracking Survey, which were collected between 1999 and 2003.

Setting and participants: 28 307 adolescents, ages 12–17 years, were classified as living in: tobacco producing states (TPS) (n  =  1929); non-tobacco producing states (non-TPS) with low tobacco control funding comparable to TPS (n  =  5323); non-TPS with relatively high funding (n  =  15 076); and non-TPS with established anti-industry ad campaigns (n  =  5979).

Main outcome measures: Reactions to anti-industry ads; strength of anti-industry attitudes/beliefs; changes in anti-industry attitudes/beliefs over time.

Results: Ad reactions did not differ by state type. Multivariate adjusted time trend analyses indicated significant, comparable increases in anti-industry attitudes/beliefs since the onset of the truth® campaign, in both TPS and non-TPS. Mediation analyses indicated that these increases were due, in part, to campaign exposure.

Conclusions: Adolescents who live in tobacco producing regions appear to be as responsive to anti-industry ads as their counterparts in non-tobacco producing regions. This study provides further evidence for the effectiveness of such ads.

  • LMTS, Legacy Media Tracking Surveys
  • TPS, tobacco producing states
  • health communication
  • tobacco prevention
  • youth
  • tobacco production
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