Real-time video counselling for rural and regional smokers

Dr Flora Tzelepis from the School of Medicine and Public Health from the University of Newcastle.
Dr Flora Tzelepis from the School of Medicine and Public Health from the University of Newcastle.

I am research assistant from the School of Medicine and Public Health from the University of Newcastle, under the supervision of Dr Flora Tzelepis.

I am writing to you about a current smoking cessation support study, targeting rural and regional smokers from NSW, inclusive of Gloucester and surrounding communities. 

Gloucester has a high proportion of smokers ( estimated 21.7 per every 100 people) compared to the national average of 16.1 per every 100 people. This new data is based on Australian Heart Foundation map, which I have attached an image of for your convenience.

People living in rural and regional towns face many barriers to healthcare, this includes smoking cessation support.

We are aware that smoking cessation may be more difficult for rural and regional people based on their geographical location, access to health facilities and cost. This randomised control trial is determined to remove these barriers and provide cessation support via video, telephone or written platforms.

This study is the first of its kind, providing real-time video counselling delivered via Skype, FaceTime or Facebook Messenger to smokers in their homes. I have attached the study web link and Dr Tzelepis’ University of Newcastle news release under ‘Hunter cancer research projects gain $1.65m funding boost’ and ‘Quit smoking study recruiting participants in regional and remote areas’.

I am writing to you as this smoking support program may be of interest and benefit to Manning River Times readers.

If you require any future information please don’t hesitate to contact myself, or Dr Tzelepis at flora.tzelepis@newcastle.edu.au or (02) 4924 6275.

Emma

Miss Emma Byrnes

Research Assistant

School of Medicine & Public Health

University of Newcastle

Editor’s note: Miss Byrnes is seeking people to participate in this study.