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Ann Behav Med. 2011 Apr;41(2):208-26. doi: 10.1007/s12160-010-9253-x.

The multiphase optimization strategy for engineering effective tobacco use interventions.

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The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, USA.


The multiphase optimization strategy (MOST) is a new methodological approach for building, optimizing, and evaluating multicomponent interventions. Conceptually rooted in engineering, MOST emphasizes efficiency and careful management of resources to move intervention science forward steadily and incrementally. MOST can be used to guide the evaluation of research evidence, develop an optimal intervention (the best set of intervention components), and enhance the translation of research findings, particularly type II translation. This article uses an ongoing study to illustrate the application of MOST in the evaluation of diverse intervention components derived from the phase-based framework reviewed in the companion article by Baker et al. (Ann Behav Med, in press, 2011). The article also discusses considerations, challenges, and potential benefits associated with using MOST and similar principled approaches to improving intervention efficacy, effectiveness, and cost-effectiveness. The applicability of this methodology may extend beyond smoking cessation to the development of behavioral interventions for other chronic health challenges.

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