Tobacco use, cessation advice to patients and attitudes to tobacco control among physicians in Ukraine

Eur J Cancer Prev. 2006 Oct;15(5):458-63. doi: 10.1097/00008469-200610000-00012.


To examine the relationship between physicians' smoking behaviors and their attitudes toward tobacco use by their patients and tobacco control in the Ukraine, a 70-item questionnaire was administered to 799 general practitioners (287 men and 512 women) working in both rural (278 physicians) and urban (521 physicians) areas of three regions of Ukraine. In all, 13.9% of physicians were current smokers and 21.6% reported being past smokers, with significantly (P<0.001) more men than women being current or past smokers. Odds ratios from logistic regression analysis reveal that physicians who are heavy smokers are 26% less likely to record tobacco use by patients than medium smokers. Heavy smokers devote significantly less effort to providing cessation information to patients and are 36% less likely to support the complete prohibition of smoking in the physician's workplace. Older physicians, female physicians and physicians working in urban areas are significantly more likely than younger, male and rural physicians to advise their patients on smoking. The provision of smoking cessation to patients by general practitioners in Ukraine is influenced by several factors, a major one being the smoking status of the physician. If smoking among physicians declines, this will encourage the patient to consider a serious quit attempt in several ways, most notably: (1) physicians act as societal role models and can promote non-smoking as a norm and (2) the likelihood that a patient will be provided smoking cessation counseling increases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Attitude of Health Personnel*
  • Demography
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Physicians / psychology*
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians' / statistics & numerical data*
  • Regression Analysis
  • Smoking / epidemiology
  • Smoking / psychology*
  • Tobacco Use Cessation / psychology*
  • Ukraine