Smoking remains the main cause of preventable deaths worldwide. Healthcare staff plays an important role in educating public about health hazards of tobacco and in advising people to quit smoking. The aim of our study was to determine the prevalence of tobacco smoking among professionals of Hospital de Clínicas de Porto Alegre.
CROSS-sectional survey among hospital employees, using a self-administered questionnaire, with questions about demographics, place of work, activities, smoking habits and attitudes towards smoking.
The questionnaire was fulfilled by 1.019 employees (24.0% out of 4.245). Physicians were 27.5%, faculty 6.7%, nurses 3.5%, healthcare technicians 19.6%, other healthcare professionals 6,7% and office workers 35.7%. Age ranged from 18 to 70 years, mean 35.8 years (SD 9.7) and 59.9% were female. Prevalence of current smokers was 21.6% and former smokers was 20.8%. All smokers started to smoke before the age of 18 years (16.1 ± 6.3) and 86.6% wanted to quit smoking. Asked about advising patients to quit smoking, 70.0% answered always, 24.8% sometimes and 7.1% never. Former smokers started to smoke at the mean age of 17.4 years (SD 3.6) and smoked in average 5 pack-years.
The prevalence of cigarette smoking among health professionals of Hospital de Clínicas de Porto Alegre is lower than that observed in the general population of Brazil (30%).
Smoking is still a problem among healthcare professionals. Because they are behavior models for patients they should be discouraged to smoke. ActivityCurrent smokersCigarettes/ dayFormer smokersCigarettes/ dayPhysicians7.7%5.5 (SD 5)15.3%5.5 (SD 7)Faculty4.5%11 (SD 3.5)35.8%12.5 (SD 9)Nurses17.1%12.5 (SD 6)28.6%6 (SD 4.5)Health technicians29.0%11 (SD 7)17.9%5.5 (SD 4.5)Other health professionals20.9%8.5 (SD 4.5)10.4%3 (SD 1.5)Office workers28.9%13 (SD 8)13.2%8.5 (SD 7)
D. Chiesa, None.