Community Rounds
December 9, 2020

Smartphone-based Financial Incentives to Promote Smoking Cessation Among Pregnant Women

Allison Kurti, PhD

Our speaker is Allison Kurti, PhD, Former Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Vermont Center on Behavior and Health, University of Vermont. Maternal smoking is the leading cause of poor birth outcomes, increases the risk for adverse neonatal outcomes, and is associated with the development of chronic health conditions later in life. Additionally, maternal smoking during pregnancy involves a substantial economic toll. Although effective smoking cessation treatments for pregnant women are sparse, one exception to this is financial incentives-based interventions. This webinar reviews the research, development, and outcomes produced by an innovative, remotely-delivered financial incentives intervention for reducing cigarette smoking during pregnancy.

Learning objectives

1. Learn about Dr. Kurti’s research developing and implementing a smartphone-based financial incentives intervention for reducing smoking among pregnant women

2. Identify key components of financial incentives interventions, and how they can be delivered via smartphone

3. Learn how to obtain biochemical verification of abstinence in interventions for substance use that are delivered remotely

4. Learn how smartphone-based or other remotely-delivered interventions can expand treatment access to rural-dwelling or other historically under-served populations


Allison Kurti

Allison Kurti, PhD

Allison Kurti, PhD, was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the University of Vermont Center on Behavioral and Health from 2014 until 2020, where she studied behavioral economics and behavioral pharmacology with mentorship from Dr. Stephen Higgins. Her research has focused largely on contingency management tools for smoking cessation among socioeconomically disadvantaged pregnant women and women with young children. Currently, Dr. Kurti is a Health Scientist at the Federal Drug Administration Center for Tobacco Products.