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Dissemination of the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research guideline
  1. Christine Williams
  1. Office of Health Care Information, Agency for Health Care Policy and Research, 2101 East Jefferson Street, Suite 501, Rockville, Maryland 20852, USA;

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The efforts of the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research (AHCPR) to disseminate our smoking cessation guideline1 to a variety of populations has netted some very impressive payoffs. Our efforts are not without challenges in dissemination as well as implementation, however. The key challenge in dissemination is to be broad enough to capture a wide range of populations. The key challenge in implementation has been debunking the myths surrounding smoking cessation.

Depending on the desired outcome, dissemination can be a time-intensive and multi-layered process. This is necessary to get the right messages—the most appropriate products to reinforce those messages—to the right audiences at the right time.

AHCPR’s dissemination strategy for the guideline was more extensive than for any previous AHCPR guideline. We developed seven separate products, almost twice as many as we typically do. This multi-faceted approach was dictated by the fact that the smoking variables are epidemiological, biological, psychological, and sociological.

AHCPR’s dissemination strategy needs to be as broad as possible. We appreciate the challenges in the clinical arena faced by the guideline’s panel of dedicated tobacco experts in dispelling commonly held beliefs. The guideline clearly proves that smoking cessation interventions:

  • do work

  • are cost-effective

  • can be quick—just three minutes

  • can be initiated by any …

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