Study: Latine People Use ACT to Quit Smoking, Lower Distress

In a pilot study, 35 percent of participants reported quitting smoking after taking part in a culturally tailored version of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) via phone and online sessions. Latine adults who smoked found it helpful. Participants also experienced declines in depression, anxiety, and psychological inflexibility. These results were published in the Journal of Contextual Behavioral Science.

Lead author Dr. Virmarie Correa-Fernández of the University of Houston said this suggests how ACT can be successfully adapted to be useful and acceptable for Latine populations, can be delivered via virtual meetings, and can produce positive results despite health-related comorbidities. It also shows that sometimes “one size doesn’t fit all,” and Latine populations are heterogeneous.

“Their preferred language may influence their adherence to treatment as well as outcomes,” she said.

She and her co-authors (including Dr. Megan Piper) hope to encourage more tobacco-related treatment research in this population, including larger clinical trials with longer follow-up periods. Correa-Fernández hopes to replicate and expand this research.

Correa-Fernández V, Tavakoli N, Motsenbocker M, Kim H, Wetter DW, Blalock JA, Canino G, Piper ME. (2024) Culturally Relevant Acceptance-based Telehealth Wellness Program for Latine Adults Who Smoke and Experience Psychological Distress: Findings from a Feasibility Study. Journal of Contextual Behavioral Science. Online May 15, 2024.