Smoking cessation services provided by tuberculosis physicians in Armenia: A qualitative study
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Zvart Avedisian Onanian Center for Health Services Research and Development, Gerald and Patricia Turpanjian School of Public Health, American University of Armenia, Republic of Armenia
Publication date: 2018-06-13
Tob. Prev. Cessation 2018;4(Supplement):A208
Aim and objective:
The importance of implementing smoking cessation interventions among tuberculosis (TB) patients has been widely acknowledged by the global public health community. The study aimed to assess TB physician’s practices on smoking cessation interventions in Armenia using ABC (A-Ask, B-Brief advice, C-Cessation support) for TB approach as recommended by the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease.

With regards to the component “A”, the great majority of TB physicians reported that they routinely ask and record TB patients’ smoking status in the medical records. For the “B” component, the overwhelming majority of TB physicians noted that they usually advise smoking TB patients to quit and emphasize the harmful effects of smoking on TB treatment outcomes. They characterized their advice as “explanatory” or “psychological” work. Concerning the “C” component, most of the physicians outlined the dominating role of patients’ willingness and willpower for quitting. A few of them listed several "traditional" behavioral techniques they offer their TB patients to support quitting. Physicians acknowledged that they did not prescribe pharmacotherapy because of poor knowledge and limited experience on tobacco dependence treatment and uncertainty about the effectiveness of smoking cessation drugs.

The ABC smoking cessation approach is not properly delivered by TB healthcare providers. Interventions targeting appropriate implementation of this strategy are key for improving TB and tobacco control in Armenia.

Funding statement. The project is funded by the grant, presented by Global Bridges Healthcare Alliance for Tobacco Dependence Treatment, hosted by Mayo Clinic and Pfizer Independent Grants for Learning and Change.

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