Background Smoking cessation interventions have typically focused on majority
populations who, in Australia, are English speaking. There has been
an overall decline in the prevalence of smoking in the Australian
community. However, there remains a relative paucity of useful
information about tobacco use and the effectiveness of tobacco
interventions among specific ethnic minorities.
Objective To determine associations of tobacco use and tobacco control
indicators for Arabic speakers seen in the Australian general
Results Twenty-nine (53.7%) of 54 eligible Arabic speaking GPs in southwest
Sydney participated in this study. Of 1371 patients seen, 29.7%
were smokers. Smokers were more likely to report poorer health
(χ2=21.7, df=1, p<0.001); 35.7% reported high nicotine dependence.
Dependence was more in men (χ2=11.7, df=1, p<001) and those who
reported poorer health (χ2=4.9, df=1, p<0.03); 35.9% had attempted to
quit in the previous year; 17% were in preparation stage of change;
42.7% recalled quit advice. Poorer self reported health status
(AOR=2.13, 95% CI: 1.14-3.97, p=0.017) and unemployment (AOR=1.69,
95% CI: 1.51–4.90, p=0.033) were independent predictors of advice
from a health professional, most often a GP (71%).
Conclusion Our study confirms previous reports that the proportion of self
reported current smokers among the Arabic community is higher than
for the Anglo-European majority. There is a need for ethno specific
campaigns in tobacco control.
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