Scientific Journal Articles
Showing 51-56 of 56 Results
McNeill, et al. 2012. Tobacco control in Europe: A deadly lack of progress [access full article]
McNeill, A., Craig, L., Willemsen, M.C., Fong, G.T. (2012). Tobacco control in Europe: A deadly lack of progress. European Journal of Public Health, 22(Suppl 1), 1-3.
Cigarettes are uniquely dangerous, killing half of all those who regularly use them and damaging the health of those who breathe in users’ smoke, particularly children. Just under a third of European adults currently smoke, and smoking has become increasingly associated with poverty, contributing significantly to widening health inequalities across the EU. In 2004, the ASPECT report, a comprehensive review of tobacco use and tobacco control policies in the EU, found that tobacco use caused well over half a million deaths in Europe annually and on top of that constituted a huge economic burden, estimated conservatively at €98-130 billion a year.1 This review also identified that whilst some European countries were observing declines in tobacco use and mortality, in other countries tobacco use was still increasing, particularly among women. The ASPECT report identified 43 recommendations to combat the epidemic, covering tobacco control policy, interventions and research. Yet to date, few of these recommendations have been implemented, and as a result, future prospects for curbing the smoking epidemic across Europe are currently very bleak.[download PDF]
Hitchman, et al. 2012. Effectiveness of the European Union text-only cigarette health warnings: Findings from Four Countries
Hitchman, S.C., Mons, U., Nagelhout, G.E., Guignard, R., McNeill, A., Willemsen, M.C., Driezen, P., Wilquin, J.L., Beck, F., Du-Roscoat, E., Pötschke-Langer, M., Hammond, D., Fong, G.T. (2012). Effectiveness of the European Union text-only cigarette health warnings: Findings from four countries. European Journal of Public Health, 22(5), 693-699.
Background: The European Commission requires tobacco products sold in the European Union to display standardized text health warnings. This article examines the effectiveness of the text health warnings among daily cigarette smokers in four Member States.
Methods: Data were drawn from nationally representative samples of smokers from the International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project surveys in France (2007), Germany (2007), the Netherlands (2008) and the UK (2006). We examined: (i) smokers' ratings of the health warnings on warning salience, thoughts of harm and quitting and forgoing of cigarettes; (ii) impact of the warnings using a Labels Impact Index (LII), with higher scores signifying greater impact; and (iii) differences on the LII by demographic characteristics and smoking behaviour.
Results: Scores on the LII differed significantly across countries. Scores were highest in France, lower in the UK, and lowest in Germany and the Netherlands. Across all countries, scores were significantly higher among low-income smokers, smokers who had made a quit attempt in the past year and smokers who smoked fewer cigarettes per day.
Conclusion: The impact of the health warnings varies greatly across countries. Impact tended to be highest in countries with more comprehensive tobacco control programmes. Because the impact of the warnings was highest among smokers with the lowest socioeconomic status (SES), this research suggests that health warnings could be more effective among smokers from lower SES groups. Differences in warning label impact by SES should be further investigated.[download PDF]
Brown, et al. 2012. Do smokers in Europe think all cigarettes are equally harmful?
Brown, A., McNeill, A., Mons, U., Guignard, R. (2012). Do smokers in Europe think all cigarettes are equally harmful? European Journal of Public Health, 22(Suppl 1), 35-40.
Background: Despite the ban on misleading descriptors such as light or mild cigarettes in Europe, there are still widespread misperceptions of the relative harmfulness of different brands of cigarettes among smokers. This study examined the extent to which smokers in three European countries believed that some cigarette brands are less harmful and why, using data from the International Tobacco Control (ITC) Europe surveys.
Methods: Cross-sectional analyses were completed among nationally representative samples of 4,956 current smokers (aged_18) from Germany (n = 1,515), France (n = 1,735) and the United Kingdom (n = 1,706) conducted between September 2006 and November 2007. Logistic regression models examined whether outcomes, including beliefs that some cigarettes could be less harmful than others, varied by socio-demographic and country of residence.
Findings: Around a quarter of smokers in the UK and France, and a third in Germany believed some cigarettes are less harmful than others. Overall, of smokers who falsely believed that some cigarettes are less harmful, 86.3% thought that tar/ nicotine yields, 48.7% taste, and 40.4% terms on packs such as ‘smooth’ or ‘ultra’ indicated less harmful brands. About a fifth of smokers across all countries chose their brand based on health reasons, and a similar proportion gave tar yields as a reason for choosing brands.
Conclusions: Our research suggests that the current European Tobacco Products Directive is inadequate in eliminating misperceptions about the relative risk of brand descriptors on cigarettes. There is therefore an urgent need to protect smokers in Europe from these misperceptions via stronger measures such as plain packaging regulations.[download PDF]
Hitchman, et al. 2012. Predictors of car smoking rules among smokers in France, Germany and the Netherlands
Hitchman, S.C., Guignard, R., Nagelhout, G.E., Mons, U., Beck, F., van den Putte, B., Crone, M.R., de Vries, H., Hyland, A., Fong, G.T. (2012). Predictors of car smoking rules among smokers in France, Germany, and the Netherlands. European Journal of Public Health, 22(Suppl 1), 17-22.
Background: As exposure to tobacco smoke pollution (TSP) has been identified as a cause of premature death and disease in non-smokers, and studies have demonstrated that smoking in cars produces high levels of TSP, this study will investigate smokers’ rules for smoking in their cars, and predictors of car smoking rules, including potentially modifiable correlates.
Methods: Data were drawn from nationally representative samples of current smokers from the International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project surveys in France (2007), Germany (2007), and the Netherlands (2008). Smokers in France and Germany were asked about smoking rules in their cars, and smokers in the Netherlands were asked about smoking rules in cars carrying children.
Results: In France and Germany, 59% and 52% of smokers respectively, allowed smoking in their cars. In the Netherlands, 36% of smokers allowed smoking in cars carrying children. Predictors of allowing smoking in cars included: being a daily vs. non-daily smoker, being younger vs. older age, having no (young) children in the home, being a heavier smoker, and allowing smoking in the home. In the Netherlands, smokers who agreed that TSP is dangerous to nonsmokers were less likely to allow smoking in cars carrying children.
Conclusion: Overall, a sizeable proportion of smokers allowed smoking in their cars across the three countries. Media campaigns with information about the dangers of TSP may increase the adoption of smoke-free cars. These media campaigns could target smokers who are most likely to allow smoking in cars.[download PDF]
Borland, et al. 2012. Cessation assistance reported by smokers in 15 countries participating in the International Tobacco Control (ITC) Policy Evaluation Surveys
Borland, R., Li, L., Driezen, P., Wilson, N., Hammond, D., Thompson, M.E., Fong, G.T., Mons, U., Willemsen, M.C., McNeill, A., Thrasher, J.F., Cummings, K.M. (2012). Cessation assistance reported by smokers in 15 countries participating in the International Tobacco Control (ITC) Policy Evaluation Survey. Addiction, 107(1), 197-205.
Aims: To describe some of the variability across the world in levels of quit smoking attempts and use of various forms of cessation support.
Design: Use of the International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project surveys of smokers, using the 2007 survey wave (or later, where necessary).
Settings: Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Ireland, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, South Korea, Thailand, United Kingdom, Uruguay and United States.
Participants: Samples of smokers from 15 countries.
Measurements: Self-report on use of cessation aids and on visits to health professionals and provision of cessation advice during the visits.
Findings: Prevalence of quit attempts in the last year varied from less than 20% to more than 50% across countries. Similarly, smokers varied greatly in reporting visiting health professionals in the last year (<20% to over 70%), and among those who did, provision of advice to quit also varied greatly. There was also marked variability in the levels and types of help reported. Use of medication was generally more common than use of behavioural support, except where medications are not readily available.
Conclusions: There is wide variation across countries in rates of attempts to stop smoking and use of assistance with higher overall use of medication than behavioural support. There is also wide variation in the provision of brief advice to stop by health professionals.[download PDF]
Nagelhout, et al. 2011. Prevalence and predictors of smoking in “smoke-free” bars. Findings from the International Tobacco Control (ITC) Europe Surveys [access full article]
Nagelhout, G.E., Mons, U., Allwright, S., Guignard, R., Beck, F., Fong, G.T., de Vries, H., Willemsen, M.C. (2011). Prevalence and predictors of smoking in smoke-free bars: Findings from the International Tobacco Control (ITC) Europe Surveys. Social Science & Medicine, 72(10), 1643-1651.
National level smoke-free legislation is implemented to protect the public from exposure to second-hand tobacco smoke (SHS). The first aim of this study was to investigate how successful the smoke-free hospitality industry legislation in Ireland (March 2004), France (January 2008), the Netherlands (July 2008), and Germany (between August 2007 and July 2008) was in reducing smoking in bars. The second aim was to assess individual smokers’ predictors of smoking in bars post-ban. The third aim was to examine country differences in predictors and the fourth aim was to examine differences between educational levels (as an indicator of socioeconomic status). This study used nationally representative samples of 3147 adult smokers from the International Tobacco Control (ITC) Europe Surveys who were surveyed pre- and post-ban. The results reveal that while the partial smoke-free legislation in the Netherlands and Germany was effective in reducing smoking in bars (from 88% to 34% and from 87% to 44%, respectively), the effectiveness was much lower than the comprehensive legislation in Ireland and France which almost completely eliminated smoking in bars (from 97% to 3% and from 84% to 3% respectively). Smokers who were more supportive of the ban, were more aware of the harm of SHS, and who had negative opinions of smoking were less likely to smoke in bars post-ban. Support for the ban was a stronger predictor in Germany. SHS harm awareness was a stronger predictor among less educated smokers in the Netherlands and Germany. The results indicate the need for strong comprehensive smoke-free legislation without exceptions. This should be accompanied by educational campaigns in which the public health rationale for the legislation is clearly explained.[download PDF]