After the smoke has cleared: evaluation of the impact of a new national smoke-free law in New Zealand.
ABSTRACT The New Zealand 2003 Smoke-free Environments Amendment Act (SEAA) extended existing restrictions on smoking in office and retail workplaces by introducing smoking bans in bars, casinos, members' clubs, restaurants and nearly all other workplaces from 10 December 2004.
To evaluate the implementation and outcomes of aspects of the SEAA relating to smoke-free indoor workplaces and public places, excluding schools and early learning centres.
Data were gathered on public and stakeholder attitudes and support for smoke-free policies; dissemination of information, enforcement activities and compliance; exposure to secondhand smoke (SHS) in the workplace; changes in health outcomes linked to SHS exposure; exposure to SHS in homes; smoking prevalence and smoking related behaviours; and economic impacts.
Surveys suggested growing majority support for the SEAA and its underlying principles among the public and bar managers. There was evidence of high compliance in bars and pubs, where most enforcement problems were expected. Self reported data suggested that SHS exposure in the workplace, the primary objective of the SEAA, decreased significantly from around 20% in 2003, to 8% in 2006. Air quality improved greatly in hospitality venues. Reported SHS exposure in homes also reduced significantly. There was no clear evidence of a short term effect on health or on adult smoking prevalence, although calls to the smoking cessation quitline increased despite reduced expenditure on smoking cessation advertising. Available data suggested a broadly neutral economic impact, including in the tourist and hospitality sectors.
The effects of the legislation change were favourable from a public health perspective. Areas for further investigation and possible regulation were identified such as SHS related pollution in semi-enclosed outdoor areas. The study adds to a growing body of literature documenting the positive impact of comprehensive smoke-free legislation. The scientific and public health case for introducing comprehensive smoke-free legislation that covers all indoor public places and workplaces is now overwhelming, and should be a public health priority for legislators across the world as part of the globalization of effective public health policy to control the tobacco epidemic.
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ABSTRACT: To determine vaccination coverage, by ethnicity, for the routine publicly funded vaccinations for 11 year olds, from school-based vaccination data in South Auckland, New Zealand. De-identified aggregate data were obtained with permission from the Counties Manukau District Health Board (CMDHB) Public Health Nurses Database on the 11-year-old tetanus and polio vaccinations from 2005, and analysed to determine percentages of form return, consent and vaccination receipt by ethnicity, including relative risks for Maori compared to non-Maori students. Reasons for vaccination refusal were also analysed. Overall, 48% of Maori and 56% of non-Maori in Year 7 in CMDHB in 2005 (n=8642) were immunised through the school-based programme. Assuming that parents who stated their child had already received these vaccinations were all correct, the estimated overall coverage in this population for the recommended Year 7 tetanus vaccination was 67% (53% for Maori, and 71% for non-Maori). Vaccination coverage amongst 11 year olds in this population was lower than coverage for other childhood vaccinations in New Zealand, and there was a large Maori:non-Maori disparity.The New Zealand medical journal 02/2009; 122(1291):14-21.
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ABSTRACT: Although the association between smoking status and poorer mental health has been well documented, the association between quit status and psychological distress is less clear. The aim of the present study is to investigate the association of smoking status and quit status with psychological distress. Data for this study is from a single year of the Survey of Families, Income and Employment (SoFIE) conducted in New Zealand (2004/05) (n = 18,525 respondents). Smoking status and quit status were treated as exposure variables, and psychological distress (Kessler-10) was treated as the outcome variable. Logistic regression analyses were performed to determine the association of smoking with psychological distress in the whole adult population and quit status with psychological distress in the ex- and current-smoking population. Current smokers had higher rates of high and very high psychological distress compared to never smokers (adjusted odds ratio (aOR) = 1.45; 95% CI: 1.24-1.69). Unsuccessful quitters had much higher levels of high to very high levels of psychological distress (16%) than any other group. Moreover, compared to long-term ex-smokers, unsuccessful quitters had a much higher odds of high to very high levels of psychological distress (aOR = 1.73; 95% CI: 1.36-2.21). These findings suggest that the significant association between smoking and psychological distress might be partly explained by increased levels of psychological distress among current smokers who made a quit attempt in the last year. This issue needs further study as it has implications for optimising the design of quitting support.BMC Public Health 01/2011; 11:598. · 2.08 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The complex composition of secondhand smoke (SHS) provides a range of constituents that can be measured in environmental samples (air, dust and on surfaces) and therefore used to assess non-smokers' exposure to tobacco smoke. Monitoring SHS exposure (SHSe) in indoor environments provides useful information on the extent and consequences of SHSe, implementing and evaluating tobacco control programmes and behavioural interventions, and estimating overall burden of disease caused by SHSe. The most widely used markers have been vapour-phase nicotine and respirable particulate matter (PM). Numerous other environmental analytes of SHS have been measured in the air including carbon monoxide, 3-ethenylpyridine, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, tobacco-specific nitrosamines, nitrogen oxides, aldehydes and volatile organic compounds, as well as nicotine in dust and on surfaces. The measurement of nicotine in the air has the advantage of reflecting the presence of tobacco smoke. While PM measurements are not as specific, they can be taken continuously, allowing for assessment of exposure and its variation over time. In general, when nicotine and PM are measured in the same setting using a common sampling period, an increase in nicotine concentration of 1 mg/m 3 corresponds to an average increase of 10 mg/m 3 of PM. This topic assessment presents a comprehensive summary of SHSe monitoring approaches using environmental markers and discusses the strengths and weaknesses of these methods and approaches.Tobacco control 09/2012; · 3.85 Impact Factor