To determine the effectiveness of an intensive quit-smoking intervention on smoking rates at 36 weeks' gestation among pregnant Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women.
Randomised controlled trial.Setting and participants: Pregnant Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women (n = 263) attending their first antenatal visit at one of three Aboriginal community-controlled health services between June 2005 and December 2009.
A general practitioner and other health care workers delivered tailored advice and support to quit smoking to women at their first antenatal visit, using evidence-based communication skills and engaging the woman's partner and other adults in supporting the quit attempts. Nicotine replacement therapy was offered after two failed attempts to quit. The control ("usual care") group received advice to quit smoking and further support and advice by the GP at scheduled antenatal visits.
Self-reported smoking status (validated with a urine cotinine measurement) between 36 weeks' gestation and delivery.
Participants in the intervention group (n = 148) and usual care group (n = 115) were similar in baseline characteristics, except that there were more women who had recently quit smoking in the intervention group than the control group. At 36 weeks, there was no significant difference between smoking rates in the intervention group (89%) and the usual care group (95%) (risk ratio for smoking in the intervention group relative to usual care group, 0.93 [95% CI, 0.86-1.08]; P = 0.212). Smoking rates in the two groups remained similar when baseline recent quitters were excluded from the analysis.
An intensive quit-smoking intervention was no more effective than usual care in assisting pregnant Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women to quit smoking during pregnancy. Contamination of the intervention across groups, or the nature of the intervention itself, may have contributed to this result.
Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ACTRN12609000929202.
"Unfortunately, due to recruiting difficulties, the study was under-powered and the results were not statistically significant. Nevertheless, when the results of the BOABS Study were pooled with those from the only other published study investigating the long-term benefit of personal support interventions in primary care
 – a study with similar point estimates − the results suggest that one-on-one intensive intervention delivered by and provided to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in a primary health care setting is more effective than usual care in encouraging smoking cessation (rate ratio of 2.4; 95% CI 1.01 − 5.53)
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
There is limited evidence regarding the best approaches to helping Indigenous Australians to stop smoking. The composite analysis of the only two smoking cessation randomised controlled trials (RCTs) investigating this suggests that one-on-one extra support delivered by and provided to Indigenous Australians in a primary health care setting appears to be more effective than usual care in encouraging smoking cessation. This paper describes the lessons learnt from one of these studies, the Be Our Ally Beat Smoking (BOABS) Study, and how to develop and implement an integrated smoking cessation program.
Qualitative study using data collected from multiple documentary sources related to the BOABS Study. As the project neared completion the research team participated in four workshops to review and conduct thematic analyses of these documents.
Challenges we encountered during the relatively complex BOABS Study included recruiting sufficient number of participants; managing the project in two distant locations and ensuring high quality work across both sites; providing appropriate training and support to Aboriginal researchers; significant staff absences, staff shortages and high workforce turnover; determining where and how the project fitted in the clinics and consequent siloing of the Aboriginal researchers relating to the requirements of RCTs; resistance to change, and maintaining organisational commitment and priority for the project. The results of this study also demonstrated the importance of local Aboriginal ownership, commitment, participation and control. This included knowledge of local communities, the flexibility to adapt interventions to local settings and circumstances, and taking sufficient time to allow this to occur.
The keys to the success of the BOABS Study were local development, ownership and participation, worker professional development and support, and operating within a framework of cultural safety. There were difficulties associated with the BOABS Study being an RCT, and many of these are shared with stand-alone programs. Interventions targeted at particular health problems are best integrated with usual primary health care. Research to investigate complex interventions in Indigenous health should not be limited to randomised clinical trials and funding needs to reflect the additional, but necessary, cost of providing for local control of planning and implementation.
BMC Public Health 06/2014; 14(1):579. DOI:10.1186/1471-2458-14-579 · 2.26 Impact Factor
"While smoking cessation rates in primary health care settings are likely to be lower than in settings where patients have specifically sought help, particularly when health care providers approach patients to quit [8,9], more evidence of effective strategies are needed if effective policy is to be developed and implemented. Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services (ACCHS) provide an appropriate setting for such interventions as they provide a culturally safe environment that has been shown to be successful in delivering interventions in other health care areas [10-12]. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples (Indigenous Australians) smoke at much higher rates than non-Indigenous people and smoking is an important contributor to increased disease, hospital admissions and deaths in Indigenous Australian populations. Smoking cessation programs in Australia have not had the same impact on Indigenous smokers as on non-Indigenous smokers. This paper describes the outcome of a study that aimed to test the efficacy of a locally-tailored, intensive, multidimensional smoking cessation program.
A randomised controlled trial of Aboriginal researcher delivered tailored smoking cessation counselling during face-to-face visits, aiming for weekly for the first four weeks, monthly to six months and two monthly to 12 months. The control (“usual care”) group received routine care relating to smoking cessation at their local primary health care service. Data collection occurred at enrolment, six and 12 months. The primary outcome was self-reported smoking cessation with urinary cotinine confirmation at final follow-up (median 13 (interquartile range 12–15) months after enrolment).
Participants in the intervention (n = 55) and usual care (n = 108) groups were similar in baseline characteristics, except the intervention group was slightly older. At final follow-up the smoking cessation rate for participants assigned to the intervention group (n = 6; 11%), while not statistically significant, was double that of usual care (n = 5; 5%; p = 0.131). A meta-analysis of these findings and a similarly underpowered but comparable study of pregnant Indigenous Australian women showed that Indigenous Australian participants assigned to the intervention groups were 2.4 times (95% CI, 1.01-5.5) as likely to quit as participants assigned to usual care.
Culturally appropriate, multi-dimensional Indigenous quit smoking programs can be successfully implemented in remote primary health care. Intensive one-on-one interventions with substantial involvement from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander workers are likely to be effective in these settings.
Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry (ACTRN12608000604303).
BMC Public Health 01/2014; 14:32. DOI:10.1186/1471-2458-14-32 · 2.26 Impact Factor
"Currently there is a dearth of research evidence regarding effective intervention strategies to inform these initiatives [9-12]. Most of the available evidence comes from small-scale local evaluation studies, predominantly undertaken in regional and remote locations [13-20]. The roll out of COAG funding under the National Partnership Agreement has in effect created an Australia wide ‘natural experiment’ in seeking to improve maternal and perinatal outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and children. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Background
Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women are between two to five times more likely to die in childbirth than non-Aboriginal women, and two to three times more likely to have a low birthweight infant. Babies with a low birthweight are more likely to have chronic health problems in adult life. Currently, there is limited research evidence regarding effective interventions to inform new initiatives to strengthen antenatal care for Aboriginal families.
The Aboriginal Families Study is a cross sectional population-based study investigating the views and experiences of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal women having an Aboriginal baby in the state of South Australia over a 2-year period. The primary aims are to compare the experiences and views of women attending standard models of antenatal care with those accessing care via Aboriginal Family Birthing Program services which include Aboriginal Maternal Infant Care (AMIC) Workers as members of the clinical team; to assess factors associated with early and continuing engagement with antenatal care; and to use the information to inform strengthening of services for Aboriginal families. Women living in urban, regional and remote areas of South Australia have been invited to take part in the study by completing a structured interview or, if preferred, a self-administered questionnaire, when their baby is between 4–12 months old.
Having a baby is an important life event in all families and in all cultures. How supported women feel during pregnancy, how women and families are welcomed by services, how safe they feel coming in to hospitals to give birth, and what happens to families during a hospital stay and in the early months after the birth of a new baby are important social determinants of maternal, newborn and child health outcomes. The Aboriginal Families Study builds on consultation with Aboriginal communities across South Australia. The project has been implemented with guidance from an Aboriginal Advisory Group keeping community and policy goals in mind right from the start. The results of the study will provide a unique resource to inform quality improvement and strengthening of services for Aboriginal families.
International Journal for Equity in Health 06/2013; 12(1):41. DOI:10.1186/1475-9276-12-41 · 1.71 Impact Factor
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