National Cancer Institute NCI Cancer Bulletin: A Trusted Source for Cancer Research News
March 6, 2012 • Volume 9 / Number 5

Cancer.gov Update

NCI's Cancer.gov Goes Mobile

smartphone

NCI has launched a new mobile web initiative that will improve access to its website, cancer.gov.

Designed specifically for mobile users, m.cancer.gov is available in English and Spanish and offers credible, current information about a wide range of cancer types, diagnosis and treatment, side effects, and other topics. Mobile users can also access cancer news, a dictionary of cancer terms that includes audio pronunciations, and a one-touch-connection to NCI’s Cancer Information Service call center at 1-800-4-CANCER, where they can talk directly with an NCI cancer information specialist.

In line with national trends, NCI has seen a substantial increase in the number of people accessing its website from mobile devices. From May to December 2011, mobile visits to cancer.gov nearly doubled, and that trend is likely to continue.

Arranged for simple navigation from any mobile device, the site provides cancer patients, their loved ones, and their caregivers with easy access to the information they need. Content for NCI's mobile site was selected by closely reviewing web analytics data on the areas of cancer.gov that mobile users were accessing most frequently.

In the future, more content, including information about clinical trials, will be added to m.cancer.gov.

NCI Launches Smokefree Texting Service in Spanish

Smokefree TXT en Español logo

NCI has released SmokefreeTXT en Español, a mobile phone-based service that provides scientific information, tips, and support for quitting smoking to Spanish speakers. Users can receive text messages leading up to and following a scheduled quit date, as well as on-demand support at any time of the day or night.

Approximately 16 percent of Hispanic adults and 22 percent of Hispanic high school students in the United States smoke, and smoking-related illnesses are the leading cause of death for Hispanics in the United States. Recent national surveys indicate that Hispanics are less likely than people of other racial or ethnic groups to receive advice about quitting from a health professional or to use proven smoking cessation treatments such as medications and counseling. This highlights the need to find novel ways to engage Hispanic smokers, including those whose primary language is Spanish.

SmokefreeTXT en Español is one of the major features of a new website, Smokefree Español. Users can enroll in the free texting service by signing up online or by texting LIBRE to 47848. 

This new tool adds to NCI’s existing English-language web-based and mobile cessation resources for smokers who want to quit.