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Tob Control. 2012 Nov;21(6):549-54. doi: 10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2011-050029. Epub 2011 Sep 20.

Smoke-free policies in psychiatric services: identification of unmet needs.

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Catalan Network of Smoke-free Hospitals, Tobacco Control Unit, Cancer Prevention and Control Program, Institut Català d'Oncologia, L'Hospitalet de Llobregat, Barcelona, Spain.



Smoke-free policies have been extended to enclosed workplaces in many countries; however, smoking continues to be commonly allowed on psychiatric premises. The aim of this study was to describe tobacco control strategies undertaken in psychiatric inpatient services and day centres in Spain.


This cross-sectional survey included all psychiatric service centres that offered public services in Catalonia, Spain (n=192). Managers responded to a questionnaire of 24 items that covered four dimensions, including clinical intervention, staff training and commitment, smoking area management and communication of smoke-free policies.


A total of 186 managers (96.9%) completed the questionnaire. Results showed low tobacco control in psychiatric services: 41.0% usually intervened in patient tobacco use, 34.1% had interventional pharmacotherapy available and 38.9% had indoor smoking areas. Day centres showed the lowest implementation of tobacco control measures. Out of 186 managers, 47.3% stated that the staff had insufficient knowledge on smoking cessation interventions.


The former Spanish partial law has not been sufficiently successful in promoting tobacco control in psychiatric services. There is room for improvement in tobacco control policies, specifically in smoking interventions, staff training and resource availability.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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