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J Community Health. 2014 Oct;39(5):886-93. doi: 10.1007/s10900-014-9866-2.

Tobacco use among fourth year Bachelor of Science in Public Health (BSPH) students of the College of Public Health: University of the Philippines Manila, academic year 2012-2013.

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Department of Health Promotion and Education, College of Public Health, University of the Philippines Manila, Manila, Philippines,


This study determines the prevalence of tobacco use among graduating Public Health students at the College of Public Health, University of the Philippines Manila. It also describes the exposure to environmental tobacco smoke, attitudes, behaviors and smoking cessation training of students. This study used a descriptive cross-sectional study design, adapting a standard questionnaire, pretested and administered to 52 Bachelor of Science in Public Health (BSPH) students at the College of Public Health, University of the Philippines Manila. Data generated from the survey were encoded using Epi Info version 3.5.4 and analyzed using Stata version 12. The prevalence of smoking among 4th year BSPH students was 5.8 % (current smokers). In the past 7 days, respondents have been exposed to secondhand smoke (44 % where they live; 79 % in places other than where they live). Majority were aware of the official policy on smoking ban in school, however, 80 % said that the policy is not enforced. Majority had favorable attitudes in terms of banning tobacco sales to adolescents, banning advertising of tobacco products, banning smoking in restaurants, discos/bars/pubs and enclosed public places. Majority of the respondents also believed that health professionals should get specific training on cessation techniques, that they do serve as role models, and that they have a role in giving advice about smoking cessation. More than three-quarters (76.9 %) of students said that health professionals who smoke are less likely to advise patients to quit. Most of the graduating students learned about the dangers of smoking, importance of obtaining tobacco use history, and providing educational support materials in their public health education but only a few received formal training about smoking cessation approaches. The implementation of the no-smoking policy of the university must be revisited. Smoking cessation approaches should be incorporated in the public health curriculum and the role of public health students in advocating a smoke-free lifestyle should be emphasized.

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