Self-administered programs for health behavior change: Smoking cessation and weight reduction by mail

Robert W. Jeffery, Brian G. Danaher, John Killen, John W. Farquhar, Richard Kinnier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Forty smokers and 47 overweight individuals were recruited for a home correspondence program for either smoking cessation or weight loss. Participants were assigned to one of four programs for changing their respective health behaviors: (1) a home correspondence program conducted entirely by mail, (2) the mail program with supplemental financial contigency contracts tied to completion of written homework, (3) the correspondence program supplemented both by homework contracts and by regular calls to a telephone answering system, and (4) a standard behavioral group program which acted as a comparison condition. Results showed that all three correspondence approaches produced significant changes in health behaviors equal to the changes experienced by participants in the standard group program. The implication of these findings for development of low cost programs for disease prevention are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-63
Number of pages7
JournalAddictive Behaviors
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1982
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Toxicology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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