The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of the 2005 British Columbia Ministry of Health Smoking Cessation Mass Media Campaign on short-term smoking behavior.
National cross-sectional data are used with a quasi-experimental approach to test the impact of the campaign.
Findings indicate that prevalence and average number of cigarettes smoked per day deviated upward from trend for the rest of Canada (P = .08; P = .01) but not for British Columbia. They also indicate that British Columbia smokers in lower risk groups reduced their average daily consumption of cigarettes over and above the 1999-2004 trend (-2.23; P = .10), whereas smokers in the rest of Canada did not, and that British Columbia smokers in high-risk groups did not increase their average daily consumption of cigarettes over and above the 1999-2004 trend, whereas smokers in the rest of Canada did (2.97; P = .01).
The overall poorer performance of high-risk groups is attributed to high exposure to cigarette smoking, which reduces a smoker's chances of successful cessation. In particular, high-risk groups are by definition more likely to be exposed to smoking by peers, but are also less likely to work in workplaces with smoking bans, which are shown to have a substantial impact on prevalence. Results suggest that for mass media campaigns to be more effective with high-risk groups, they need to be combined with other incentives, and that more prolonged interventions should be considered.
Little attention has been paid to the need for accountability instruments applicable across all health units in the public health system. One tool, the balanced scorecard was created for industry and has been successfully adapted for use in Ontario hospitals. It consists of 4 quadrants: financial performance, outcomes, customer satisfaction and organizational development. The aim of the present study was to determine if a modified nominal group technique could be used to reach consensus among public health unit staff and public health specialists in Ontario about the components of a balanced scorecard for public health units.
A modified nominal group technique consensus method was used with the public health unit staff in 6 Eastern Ontario health units (n=65) and public health specialists (n=18).
73.8% of the public health unit personnel from all six health units in the eastern Ontario region participated in the survey of potential indicators. A total of 74 indicators were identified in each of the 4 quadrants: program performance (n=44); financial performance (n=11); public perceptions (n=11); and organizational performance (n=8).
The modified nominal group technique was a successful method of incorporating the views of public health personnel and specialists in the development of a balanced scorecard for public health.