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Tobacco Use and Smoking Cessation Practices among Physicians in Developing Countries: A Literature Review (1987–2010)
School of Public Health, Guangxi Medical University, Nanning 530021, China
Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine and Boston Medical Center, Boston, MA 02218, USA
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA
Department of Preventive Medicine, Keck School of Medicine of USC, USC Institute for Global Health, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90033, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 November 2013; in revised form: 18 December 2013 / Accepted: 19 December 2013 / Published: 30 December 2013
Abstract: Physicians have a key role to play in combating tobacco use and reducing the tobacco induced harm to health. However, there is a paucity of information about tobacco-use and cessation among physicians in developing countries. To assess the need for and nature of smoking cessation services among physicians in developing countries, a detailed literature review of studies published in English, between 1987 and 2010 was carried out. The electronic databases Medline and Pub Med were searched for published studies. The findings show that there are regional variations in the current smoking prevalence, quitting intentions, and cessation services among physicians. Smoking prevalence (median) was highest in Central/Eastern Europe (37%), followed by Africa (29%), Central and South America (25%) and Asia (17.5%). There were significant gender differences in smoking prevalence across studies, with higher prevalence among males than females. Smoking at work or in front of patients was commonly practiced by physicians in some countries. Asking about smoking status or advising patients to quit smoking was not common practice among the physicians, especially among smoker physicians. Organized smoking cessation programs for physicians did not exist in all of these regions. This review suggests that while smoking of physicians varies across different developing regions; prevalence rates tend to be higher than among physicians in developed countries. Quitting rates were low among the physicians, and the delivery of advice on quitting smoking was not common across the studies. To promote tobacco control and increase cessation in populations, there is a need to build physicians’ capacity so that they can engage in tobacco use prevention and cessation activities.
Keywords: tobacco use; physicians; developing countries; smoking cessation; review literature
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Abdullah, A.S.; Stillman, F.A.; Yang, L.; Luo, H.; Zhang, Z.; Samet, J.M. Tobacco Use and Smoking Cessation Practices among Physicians in Developing Countries: A Literature Review (1987–2010). Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2014, 11, 429-455.
Abdullah AS, Stillman FA, Yang L, Luo H, Zhang Z, Samet JM. Tobacco Use and Smoking Cessation Practices among Physicians in Developing Countries: A Literature Review (1987–2010). International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2014; 11(1):429-455.
Abdullah, Abu S.; Stillman, Frances A.; Yang, Li; Luo, Hongye; Zhang, Zhiyong; Samet, Jonathan M. 2014. "Tobacco Use and Smoking Cessation Practices among Physicians in Developing Countries: A Literature Review (1987–2010)." Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 11, no. 1: 429-455.