A multimedia support skills intervention for female partners of male smokeless tobacco users: use and perceived acceptability

Laura Akers, Judy A. Andrews, Judith S. Gordon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Background: UCare is a new multimedia (website+booklet) intervention for women who want their male partner to quit their use of smokeless tobacco. The intervention is based on research showing that perceived partner responsiveness to social support is highest when the supporter conveys respect, understanding, and caring in their actions. The website included both didactic and interactive features, with optional video components, and special activities to help women develop empathy for nicotine addiction. The booklet reinforced the website content, encouraged women to use the website, and served both as a physical reminder of the intervention and a convenient way to share the information with her partner. Objective: The objective of this study was to describe the utilization and acceptability of a multimedia intervention among women seeking to support their partner in quitting smokeless tobacco. Lessons learned with respect to design considerations for online interventions are also summarized. Methods: We present the evaluation of the intervention components’ use and usefulness in a randomized trial. Results: In the randomized clinical trial, more than 250,000 visits were made to the website in a 2-year period, with the vast majority from mobile devices. Of the 552 women randomized to receive the intervention, 96.9% (535/552) visited the website at least once, and 30.8% (170/552) completed the core website component, “The Basics.” About half of the women (287/552) used the interactive “Take Notes” feature, and 37% (204/552) used the checklists. Few women used the post-Basics features. At 6 weeks, 40.7% (116/285) reported reading the printed and mailed booklet. Website and booklet use were uncorrelated. User ratings for the website and booklet were positive overall. Conclusions: Intervention website designers should consider that many users will access the program only once or twice, and many will not complete it. It is also important to distinguish between core and supplemental features and to consider whether the primary purpose is training or support. Furthermore, printed materials still have value.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere10
JournalJMIR Formative Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2018


  • Multimedia
  • Social support
  • Tobacco cessation
  • Usability testing
  • Website design
  • Website development
  • Website use assessment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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