"Time-based" workplace smoking bans during working hours (including and excluding lunchtime) and combustible cigarette and heated tobacco product use: a cross-sectional analysis of the 2020 JASTIS study

Prev Med Rep. 2022 Jul 29;29:101938. doi: 10.1016/j.pmedr.2022.101938. eCollection 2022 Oct.


Although some private companies have implemented "time-based" workplace smoking bans covering all working hours including lunchtime, little is known about their impact on tobacco use. We examined associations between workplace smoking bans during working hours (including and excluding lunchtime) versus no ban and workers' combustible cigarette and heated tobacco product (HTP) use. We used data from the Japan "Society and New Tobacco" Internet Survey 2020 and in total 4,222 workers aged 20-74 were included in the analyses. Using inverse probability weighting, prevalence ratios (PRs) and 95% confidence interval (CI) for tobacco use were calculated according to "time-based" smoke-free policies: workplace smoking bans for working hours including lunchtime (lunchtime ban), workplace smoking ban for working hours excluding lunchtime (lunchtime allowed), and no ban for working hours (no ban). The PRs of "lunchtime ban" for workers' use of combustible cigarettes and HTPs were lower than "no ban": 0.43 (CI: 0.29, 0.63) for combustible cigarette use and 0.61 (CI: 0.41, 0.90) for HTPs use. Meanwhile, the PRs for "lunchtime allowed" was not significant: 0.84 (CI: 0.70, 1.01) for combustible cigarettes use and 1.15 (CI: 0.94, 1.40) for HTPs use. Workplace bans on smoking during working hours which include lunchtime may successfully reduce workers' combustible cigarette and HTP use, but allowing their use during lunchtime may reduce the effectiveness of the ban. Not only conventional "place-based" smoke-free policies, but also "time-based" smoke-free policies are useful for tobacco control in the workplace.

Keywords: Heated tobacco product; Tobacco; Working hours; Workplace smoking.