The UNC Tobacco Prevention and Evaluation Program (TPEP) conducts tobacco control research and program evaluation. Based in the UNC Department of Family Medicine, our interdisciplinary team collaborates with national and state level clients to conduct high quality research and responsive program evaluation studies. Our work is designed to inform policy and strengthen programs to advance public health.

 

State Level Evaluation

North Carolina Youth Tobacco Prevention Evaluation 
TPEP is excited to be working with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Service, Tobacco Prevention and Control Branch (TPCB), on new youth tobacco prevention efforts focused on emerging tobacco products like electronic cigarettes.

With $500,000 allocated from the NC Legislature for the current fiscal year and another $500,000 for fiscal year 2019, the TPCB is working with regional tobacco control efforts across the state to increase youth empowerment efforts related to tobacco control policy and to provide education and resources to teachers, parents, and other youth influencers who are anxious to understand and address increasing youth use of electronic cigarettes. TPEP is collaborating with the TPCB on an evaluation designed to identify challenges in getting this new work off the ground across the state, highlight early successes, and offer recommendations to maximize the impact of this funding.

 

Federally Funded Research

Enhancing Source Credibility in Tobacco Regulatory Communications 
TPEP manages one of three R01’s funded by the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Tobacco Products. This five-year research study is part of UNC Lineberger’s Center for Regulatory Research on Tobacco Communication. The project led by TPEP focuses on the source credibility of FDA as a regulator of tobacco products, and on methods to improve messages about the chemicals in cigarette smoke.

Our Aims: 
Aim 1: Characterize perceptions of the FDA in terms of its (1) regulatory authority, (2) credibility, and (3) tobacco control communication campaigns among adolescents, young adults and adults, and among vulnerable populations (Black and gay, lesbian, and bisexual (GLB)).

Aim 2: Use FDA regulatory communication messages (developed by Project 1 of our CRRTC) to experimentally examine three determinants of source credibility (i.e., source sponsor, source depiction and source engagement) to create optimally framed messages and test them among current smokers.

Aim 3: Following a pilot to test intervention feasibility, conduct a randomized controlled trial (RCT) of 352 young adult and adult smokers to test the hypothesis that optimally framed (high source credibility) FDA cigarette constituent messages will increase intentions to quit more than sub-optimally framed (no source attached) cigarette constituent messages.