Background: Currently, there is an intensive debate about the regulation of the use of electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) in indoor places. The aim of this study was to assess the attitudes toward e-cigarette use in indoor workplaces and selected public and private venues among the general population in Barcelona (Spain) in 2013-2014.
Methods: This is a cross-sectional study of a representative sample of the population of Barcelona (n = 736). The field work was conducted between May 2013 and February 2014. We computed the prevalence and the adjusted odds ratios (OR) derived from multivariable logistic regression models.
Results: The awareness of e-cigarettes was 82.3%. Forty five percent of respondents did not agree with the use of e-cigarettes in public places and 52.3% in workplaces. The proportion of disapproval of the use of e-cigarettes in indoor places was higher at 71.5% for schools and 65.8% for hospitals and health care centers; while the prevalence of disapproval of e-cigarette use in homes and cars was lower (18.0% and 32.5%, respectively). Respondents who disagreed on the use of e-cigarettes in indoor workplaces were more likely to be older (OR = 1.64 and 1.97 for groups 45-64 and ≧65 years old, respectively), those with a high educational level (OR = 1.60), and never and former smokers (OR = 2.34 and 2.16, respectively). Increased scores in the Fagerström test for cigarette dependence were also related to increased support for their use.
Conclusions: Based on this population based study, half of the general population of Barcelona does not support the use of e-cigarettes in indoor workplaces and public places, with the percentage reaching 65% for use in schools, hospitals and health care centers. Consequently, there is good societal support in Spain for the politicians and legislators to promote policies restricting e-cigarettes use in workplaces and public places, including hospitality venues.