An evaluation to assess the effectiveness of "Quit 4 U", a smoking cessaton service in Dundee combining financial incentives and behavioural support

The uptake of smoking cessation services by smokers living in relatively deprived areas tends to be low. NHS Tayside has introduced a new scheme (quit4u) in which participants are paid a financial incentive if verified as smoke-free. This study assessed the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of supplementing standard smoking cessation services with financial incentives using the ISD minimum dataset on smoking cessation services. The results showed that quit rates were higher for quit4u compared to standard smoking cessation services. Quit4u was also shown to be a cost-effective use of NHS resources.

Outcome and Translation

Smoking remains a major public health concern. Devising (cost)-effective smoking cessation interventions is challenging, especially in relatively deprived areas. This study showed that quit4u was cost-effective. It should be considered whether similar schemes should be provided in other areas in Scotland thereby reducing smoking and its negative health effects in deprived areas throughout Scotland in a cost-effective manner.

HERU researchers involved in this research project: Marjon van der Pol and Anne Ludbrook

External Collaborators: C Martin, R Armstrong (Scottish Centre for Social Research) and A Amos (University of Edinburgh)


Ormston, R., McConville, S., Pol, M. van der, Ludbrook, A. and Amos, A. (2012) Evaluation of quit4.Report to NHS Health Scotland, NHS Health Scotland.

Ormston, R., Pol, M. van der, Ludbrook, A., McConville, S. and Amos, A. (2015) 'quit4u: the effectiveness of combining behavioural support, pharmacotherapy and financial incentives to support smoking cessation', Health Education Research, 30(1), 121-133.


Pol, M. van der and Ludbrook, A. (2010) ‘Quantitative analysis, implementation and evaluation: the learning to date’, Joint Seminar between NHS Tayside, NHS Health Scotland and the Scottish Centre for Social Research, Dundee, June 2010.

Amos A, Pol, M. van der (2010) ‘Lessons from quit4u: combining support, pharmacotherapy and financial incentives to support smoking cessation’, UK National Smoking Cessation Conference, Birmingham, June 2012.

Ludbrook, A. Pol, M. van der, Ormston, R. and Amos, A. (2012) ‘Innovation in smoking cessation: the impact of quit4u on take up and smoking quit rates in a deprived area’, Annual Public Health Conference, Crieff, November 2012.

Ormston, R., Amos, A., Ludbrook, A., McConville, S. and Pol, M. van der (2012) ’Getting the ‘whole package’ right: learning from the quit4u smoking cessation scheme’, Annual Public Health Conference, Crieff, November 2012.