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Article

First Report on Smoking and Infection Control Behaviours at Outdoor Hotspots during the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Unobtrusive Observational Study

1
School of Public Health, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China
2
School of Nursing, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Judith J. Prochaska; Kathleen Gali; Erin A. Vogel and Kelly C. Young-Wolff
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(3), 1031; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18031031
Received: 26 November 2020 / Revised: 21 January 2021 / Accepted: 22 January 2021 / Published: 25 January 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smoking, Vaping and COVID-19)
This study was to observe smoking behaviours and infection control behaviours in smokers at outdoor smoking hotspots during the COVID-19 pandemic in Hong Kong. We conducted unobtrusive observations at nine hotspots during 1 July 2019–31 January 2020 (pre-outbreak, 39 observations), 1 February–30 April 2020 (outbreak, eight observations), and 1 May–11 June 2020 (since-outbreak, 20 observations). Sex, age group, type of tobacco products used, duration of stay, group smoking behaviours, face mask wearing and infection control behaviours of smokers, and mask wearing of non-smoking pedestrians were observed. Compared with pre-outbreak, lower volumes of smokers were observed during outbreak and since-outbreak. Smokers gathered more in a group (24.5% and 25.8% vs. 13.4%, respectively) and stayed longer (91.5% and 83.6% vs. 80.6% stayed ≥1 min) during outbreak and since-outbreak than pre-outbreak. Ninety-six percent smokers possessed a face mask. While smoking, 81.6% of smokers put the mask under the chin and 13.8% carried it in the hand, 32.4% did not wear a mask immediately after smoking, 98.0% did not sanitize hands, and 74.3% did not keep a distance of at least one metre. During the COVID-19 pandemic, smokers gathered closely and stayed longer at the hotspots, and few practised hand hygiene, all of which may increase the risk of infection. View Full-Text
Keywords: smoker; smoking; COVID-19; infection control behaviours; face mask smoker; smoking; COVID-19; infection control behaviours; face mask
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sun, Y.; Lam, T.H.; Cheung, Y.T.D.; Wang, M.P.; Wu, Y.; Chen, J.; Zhang, X.; Li, W.H.C.; Ho, S.Y. First Report on Smoking and Infection Control Behaviours at Outdoor Hotspots during the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Unobtrusive Observational Study. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 1031. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18031031

AMA Style

Sun Y, Lam TH, Cheung YTD, Wang MP, Wu Y, Chen J, Zhang X, Li WHC, Ho SY. First Report on Smoking and Infection Control Behaviours at Outdoor Hotspots during the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Unobtrusive Observational Study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(3):1031. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18031031

Chicago/Turabian Style

Sun, Yuying, Tai H. Lam, Yee T.D. Cheung, Man P. Wang, Yongda Wu, Jianjiu Chen, Xiaoyu Zhang, William H.C. Li, and Sai Y. Ho. 2021. "First Report on Smoking and Infection Control Behaviours at Outdoor Hotspots during the COVID-19 Pandemic: An Unobtrusive Observational Study" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 3: 1031. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18031031

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