Background:: This study examined whether changes in quitting smoking differed according to smokers’ cigarettes consumed per day (CPD) and intention to quit (ITQ) after the introduction of two tobacco control measures in Korea, a tobacco tax increase in 2015 and pictorial cigarette pack warnings (PCW) in 2016. Methods:: We utilized data from the Korea Welfare Panel Study from 2013 to 2017, an interval that was divided into four periods (2013–2014, 2014–2015, 2015–2016, and 2016–2017). We examined differential changes in quitting smoking by smokers’ CPD and ITQ using a generalized estimating equation model. Results:: Smokers with 1–14 CPD or an ITQ were more likely to quit smoking in each period. However, when compared to the pre-policy period (2013–2014), smokers with 15 or more CPD and those with an ITQ had a higher risk ratio of quitting smoking in all study periods. In stratified analyses, when the tobacco excise tax was increased, the risk ratios of quitting smoking increased in most subgroups, especially smokers with 15 or more CPD or an ITQ. The increased risk ratio of 15 or more CPD smokers subgroup sustained afterward. However, after the introduction of PCW, there were no significant changes from the previous period in most subgroups. Conclusions:: The addictive nature of tobacco and the type of tobacco control policies jointly contributed to changes in quitting smoking among Korean smokers. Tobacco control policies, particularly substantial tobacco tax increase, acted as a cue-to-action for quitting smoking among more dependent smokers.
- Republic of Korea
- Smoking cessation