Grantee: Claire A. Spears, PhD

Claire A. Spears

Claire A. Spears, PhD

Psychologist and Health Disparities Researcher
  • Georgia State University

Dr. Spears is passionate about research that aims to promote health equity. Low-income populations, those with mental health conditions, and certain racial/ethnic minority groups experience profound cancer disparities. Tobacco use is a primary contributor to disproportionate rates of cancer mortality in these populations. Mindfulness training can help people quit smoking, but most mindfulness research has focused on more affluent and non-Hispanic white populations. Dr. Spears is committed to expanding the benefits of mindfulness to more diverse populations. She is enthusiastic about the potential for mobile technology to increase access to mindfulness-based smoking cessation treatment for low-income adults.

This project aims to improve upon mindfulness-based smoking cessation treatment for low-income, racially/ethnically diverse smokers by using innovative mobile health technology (mHealth) methods. Dr. Spears and her team developed a text messaging program, "iQuit Mindfully," to teach mindfulness strategies and provide 24/7 support for quitting smoking. In addition to evaluating iQuit Mindfully, this project will examine the mechanisms through which mindfulness promotes smoking cessation among low-income adults, which could inform the development of more efficacious and efficient treatments to reduce tobacco-related cancer disparities.

Practicing mindfulness has made a real difference in my life. Unfortunately, most of the research on mindfulness has not included very diverse populations, and I am committed to making mindfulness training more widely available to people from all walks of life. Using mobile technology could be one way to provide mindfulness training to low-income smokers who are interested in quitting smoking.”

To request edits to this profile, please contact us at