Principal Investigator: Carl Latkin
Funding Mechanism: National Institutes of Health- Grant
ID number: 3 R01 DA032217-02S1
Award Date: 9/1/2012
Institution: Johns Hopkins University
Chronically-ill, low income African-Americans have high smoking rates and exhibit disparities in smoking-related morbidity and mortality. This study will evaluate tobacco use behaviors and perceptions among former or current drug using, low income African-American smokers who are (n=250) and are not (n=250) HIV positive; the study expands the scope of an ongoing randomized controlled trial of a social network intervention for HIV-positive African-American drug users that attempts to reduce HIV behavioral risk and increase entry into care. Specific aims are: (1) to explore the context of tobacco communication channels and messages in low income African-American smokers and subgroups characterized by drug use and HIV status; (2) to examine associations between tobacco products, labels and claims and subjects’ perceptions and behaviors; and (3) to identify communication channels and messages promoting tobacco use, and consider their potential for promoting tobacco cessation and tobacco-related health resource utilization. Investigators will conduct a series of focus groups to explore the social, cultural and economic factors that influence tobacco use; test the impact of variations in health warnings, package design, product appeal and health claims; and conduct a computer-administered evaluation of the impact of health warnings and tobacco claims on tobacco perceptions and behaviors. Study findings may inform regulatory activities relevant to this under-studied, under-served population; results from the proposed and parent studies will also inform the investigators’ development of tailored social network interventions and other community and media approaches to tobacco control and prevention.