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J Community Health. 2014 Oct;39(5):894-900. doi: 10.1007/s10900-014-9893-z.

Attitudes of students and employees towards the implementation of a totally smoke free university campus policy at King Saud University in Saudi Arabia: a cross sectional baseline study on smoking behavior following the implementation of policy.

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Community Health Science Department, College of Applied Medical Sciences, King Saud University, P.O. Box 10219, Riyadh, 11433, Saudi Arabia,


Tobacco smoking is the preventable health issue worldwide. The harmful consequences of tobacco smoking and exposure to second-hand tobacco smoke are well documented. The aim of this study is to compares the prevalence of smoking among students, faculty and staff and examines their interest to quit. Study also determines the difference on perceptions of smoking and non-smoking students, faculty and staff with regard to implementation of a smoke-free policy. A cross-sectional survey was administered to one of the largest universities in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia during the academic year of 2013. A Likert scale was used on questionnaires towards attitude to smoking and smoking free policy. The Chi squared test was used to determine the difference of support on completely smoke free campus for smokers and non-smokers. Smoking rates were highest among staff members (36.8 %) followed by students (11.2 %) and faculty (6.4 %). About half of the smokers (53.7 %) within the university attempted to quit smoking. Students (OR 3.10, 95 % CI 1.00-9.60) and faculty (OR 4.06, 95 % CI 1.16-14.18) were more likely to make quit smoking than staff members. Majority of the respondents (89.6 %) were supportive of a smoking--free policy and indicated that should be strictly enforced especially into public places. Results also showed that smokers were more likely to support a smoke-free policy if there are no fines or penalties. These baseline findings will provide information among administrators in formulating and carrying out a total smoke free policy. Although the majority of people within the King Saud University demonstrate a high support for a smoke-free policy, administrators should consider difference between smokers and non-smokers attitudes when implementing such a policy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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