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Glob Health Promot. 2013 Sep 16. [Epub ahead of print]

Exposure to secondhand smoke among adults - Philippines, 2009.

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  • 11.Philippines Country Office, World Health Organization, Manila, Philippines.


Introduction:We assessed the differences in exposure to secondhand smoke (SHS) among adults at home, in indoor workplaces, and in various public places in the Philippines across various socio-demographic groups.Methods:Data from the Global Adult Tobacco Survey conducted in 2009 in the Philippines were used. The data consist of survey answers from 9705 respondents from a nationally representative, multistage probability sample of adults aged 15 years or older. We considered that respondents were exposed to SHS if during the previous 30 days they reported that they lived in a home, worked in a building, or visited a public place where people smoked. The public places included in our analysis were indoor workplaces, public transportation vehicles, restaurants, government buildings or offices, and healthcare facilities. The differences in various socioeconomic and demographic groups' exposure to SHS in these places were also examined.Results:Of respondents who reported working indoors, 36.8% were exposed to SHS. Men (43.3% [95% CI 39.7-46.9]) were more likely than women (28.8% [95% CI 25.4-32.4]) to be exposed to SHS (p < 0.001). Of those working in sites where smoking was not allowed, 13.9% were exposed to SHS, whereas 66.5% were exposed where smoking is allowed in some enclosed areas, and 90.7% were exposed where smoking is allowed everywhere. During the 30 days preceding the survey, more than 50% of those who took public transportation were exposed to SHS; exposure for those who visited public buildings was 33.6% in restaurants, 25.5% in government buildings or offices, and 7.6% in healthcare facilities.Conclusion:Despite a national law passed and several local government ordinances that have promulgated smoke-free workplaces, schools, government offices, and healthcare facilities, our findings show that a large proportion of adults were exposed to SHS at work and in public places, which offers opportunities to strengthen and improve enforcement of the smoke-free initiatives and ordinances in the Philippines.


Global Adult Tobacco Survey; Philippines; World Health Organization; adults; secondhand smoke; socio-economic status; tobacco

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