Medicaid Incentives for Prevention of Chronic Diseases: Increasing Quitting Among Medi-Cal Smokers

Oversight and evaluation of a federal grant program for the California Department of Health Care Services, aimed at using new outreach and incentives to encourage use of smoking cessation services among Medicaid beneficiaries..

Principal Investigators: Shu-Hong Zhu, PhD; Elisa Tong, MD, MA; Wendy Max, PhD
Funding: Federal grant awarded by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services


With DHCS leadership and collaboration, CAMRI coordinates the UC partners to implement, maintain, and evaluate this federally-funded program over the project's five years. It is designed to decrease the smoking rate among Medicaid beneficiaries state-wide, and particularly among those with chronic conditions. Tobacco cessation methods, including pharmacological and behavioral treatments will be more effectively promoted and made barrier-free, and include modest financial incentives for participation and retention in the treatments.

The evaluation will measure the impact of enhanced outreach efforts and incentives on smoking prevalence and improved health outcomes. An economic analysis of the program costs and their potential effect on health care costs in the Medi-Cal population will be conducted in the final year of the project, 2016.