The European Cancer Congress 2013

September 27, 2012, 08:00am -- October 01, 2013, 05:00pm
Amsterdam, Netherlands

The European Cancer Congress 2013

European Cancer Congress (ECCO), in partnership with ESSO 33, EACR, EONS and SIOPE

Session title: Nursing - Improvements in Cancer Nursing Care

Session type: Proffered Papers Session

Track: Oncology Nursing

Abstract number: 1718

Abstract title:   Czech nurses' knowledge, attitudes and behaviors towards tobacco dependence and treatment

Authors: L. Sarna(1), S. Bialous(2), E. Kralikova(3), A. Kmetova(3), V. Falbrova(4), S. Kulovana(4), K. Mala(5), E. Roubickova(6), M. Wells(1), J. Brook(7)

(1)University of California Los Angeles, School of Nursing, Los Angeles, USA
(2)Tobacco Policy International, San Francisco, USA
(3)Charles University and the General Hospital, Centre of Tobacco Dependence of the 3rd Medical Department, Prague, Czech Republic
(4)General University Hospital, Centre of Tobacco Dependence of the 3rd Medical Department, Prague, Czech Republic
(5)Central Military Hospital, Prague, Czech Republic
(6)Faculty Hospital Karlovske Vinohrady, Clinic of Radiotherapy & Oncology, Prague, Czech Republic
(7)University of California Los Angeles, David Geffen School of Medicine, Los Angeles, USA

Background: Tobacco use is the top preventable cause of cancer in the Czech Republic and in Europe. Tobacco dependence treatment is a cost-effective strategy to prevent morbidity and mortality. Nurses, the largest group of health professionals, can play a pivotal role in implementing this intervention in clinical practice. The purpose of this report is to describe information about the frequency and correlates of Czech nurses' delivery of intervention in tobacco dependence treatment prior to an educational intervention.


Material and Methods: A train-the trainer program to provide evidence-based tobacco dependence treatment and the nurses' role was developed by tobacco control experts in the US and the Czech Republic, in collaboration with the International Society of Nurses in Cancer Care (ISNCC). The program was delivered by Czech nurses in Czech at the 2012 ISNCC congress to 22 nurses. Subsequently, 10 workshops delivered by the trainees were held throughout the country. Prior to each workshop, participants were asked to complete a survey that included questions about demographics, clinical practice, attitudes about tobacco control, and frequency of delivery of tobacco dependence treatment.

Results: 157 nurses completed the survey. While 63% of nurses ‘always/usually’ asked patients' about their smoking status, 46% provided advice to quit, 26% assisted in developing a cessation plan, and only 11% always arranged for follow up and referred smokers to the telephone quitline. Few, 22%, reported that nurses could play an important role in helping patients quit; 63% rated their ability to help patients quit as ‘fair/poor’. Approximately 30% of nurses were current smokers. Smokers were less likely to ‘always/usually’ assess (p=0.02), arrange (p=0.02), or recommend a smoke-free environment (p=0.002). The average age of nurses who ‘always/usually’ arranged or referred was significantly higher as compared to those nurses who did not (p<0.01).

Conclusions: These data indicate that few nurses in the Czech Republic consistently intervene with smokers. The majority underestimated their power to provide effective smoking cessation interventions and assessed that they needed additional training. Although they have potential to significantly contribute to decrease the burden of tobacco-related diseases, they underestimate the importance of their role. Capacity building programs in tobacco control for nurses are critical.

No conflict of interest.

Keywords: tobacco, cessation, nurse