The Awareness on Smoking Health Warning and Its Impact Among Muar Community

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DOI: 10.21522/TIJPH.2013.04.01.Art008

Authors : Roy Rillera Marzo, Thanamletchumy Subramaniam, Hemavathy Thirumalai Rajan


Introduction: Currently worldwide 3 million deaths annually estimated to be responsible for smoking. On average, everyday Malaysian adult smoker smoked 14 cigarettes per day. Most smokers were aware of the deleterious of smoking and had strong intentions to quit smoking but they were not motivated enough to stop.

Aim: To assess awareness on smoking health warning and its impacts among Muar Community.

Methodology: It was a quantitative survey done on 383 respondents from Bandar Maharani, Muar. The participants were aged 13-70 years. This was a descriptive, cross-sectional study using two- step sampling methods which are cluster sampling and simple random sampling. Data analysis including descriptive statistics was used to describe participants’ socio-demographic characteristics and texts, tables, graphs, percentages and independent t-test was used to present the results.

Result: The highest smoking rate noted between the ages of 25-44. Among the races, Malays were the highest smokers which was 74 %.( p=0.019). Smokers (64.1%) are married and there were significantly difference (p = 0.000) between the marital status and the smokers. Majority of the smokers were employed with 77.1% and it was significantly different (p=0.000). Greater number of smokers and non-smokers (90.9%) were aware about the presence of smoking health warning on cigarette packs. Smokers with 75% were planning to quit and about 58.3% of them perceived that cigarette health warning does not influence to prevent or to stop smoking (p=0.000). Majority of the smokers and non-smokers selected the graphic models based on its threatenig effects compared to other models.

Conclusion: Majority of the respondents has good awareness on smoking health warning and have seen or read the smoking health warning on the cigarette packs. The influence of cigarette health warning had no effect on smokers to stop smoking. Among the 6 models shown, graphic image lung cancer (Model A) has the highest number of choice by the smokers (32.3%) and non-smokers (27.2%). Threatening images was the most preferable choice among the respondents.

Recommendations: Each workplace recommended to set-up smoking cessation programs. Hospital based intervention program should be given by health practitioners in the hospital setting on pre-admission clinic for smokers. There must be tobacco rehabilitation programs in all levels of healthcare service centers for easy accessibility and promote their services for better outcomes. Existing graphic health warning should be improved in terms of size, appearance and message to be more effective. Current quitline services should be promoted more through the web sites and social media pages.

Keywords: Smoking, awareness, health warning, threatening, health


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