Background: PAS (Personal Advice in Stopping smoking) combines two of the most effective smoking cessation interventions: multiple computer tailoring and tailored counselling by a practice nurse in the general practice.
Methods/design: Since May 2009, practice nurses are recruiting smoking patients. Each practice nurse is asked to recruit 15 adult smokers who are willing to quit within 6months and have access to the Internet. Smokers can sign up for PAS through the PAS website and are then randomized into one of three groups receiving multiple tailoring and counselling (MTC), multiple tailoring (MT) or usual care (UC), respectively. All groups receive questionnaires at baseline, 2days after a set quit date and at 6weeks, 6months and 12months follow-up. The MT group receives tailored, iterative feedback letters at the first four measurements points. At 12months follow-up biochemical validation will take place amongst respondents reporting to have quit. The three groups will be compared with regard to quit attempt rate, point prevalence abstinence and continued abstinence by means of logistic multilevel regression analyses. Linear multilevel regression analyses will be used to compare the three groups regarding smoking related beliefs.
Discussion: The present paper provides an extensive description of the development of PAS and of the design of the study towards its effectiveness. This might provide insight into PAS’ potentially effective working mechanisms. The results concerning effectiveness may contribute to knowledge about the effectiveness of smoking cessation interventions aimed at smoking adults.