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The 13th World Conference on Tobacco OR Health

Building capacity for a tobacco-free world

July 12-15, 2006, Washington, DC, USA

Thursday, July 13, 2006 - 12:00 PM

Revealing Trends and Features of Smoking among Youth in Baku, Azerbaijan

Rufat S. Nasibov, M.D., Azerbaijan Public Health Association, Ataturk ave. 35, 54, Baku, Azerbaijan

Objective: The purpose of the Youth Tobacco Survey was tracking tobacco use among young people aimed to examine the prevalence of smoking among adolescents of 14-17 years old in Baku, determine the characteristics of smoker behaviors related to smoking by sex, age and collect the information about knowledge, attitudes and practices related to smokers and nonsmokers in order to build the case for action and the basis for planning intervention and evaluation. This is very important in terms of wide use of tobacco products marketing efforts targeted at youth. Official data reported that prevalence of smokers among people under 18 is zero (!). This unrealistic and misleading figure is used by the tobacco industry and hampers development and implementation of youth-based tobacco control programs.

Methods: Methods used are as follow: school-based survey study, socio-statistical analysis of the research results, development and formulation of possible tobacco control interventions, dissemination of the study results among local officials.

Results: Research data revealed that 33 % of questioned adolescents tried or experimented with cigarette, of which 21% (17% of male; 4% of female) smoke regularly. Tobacco products are easy accessible, majority of young smokers do not experience any difficulties in buying tobacco products. At the same time their knowledge about health impact, secondhand smoke, smoking cessation and other issues are scant and inadequate. The study allowed determining trends in tobacco use among youth, as well as behavioral features which can help use the results as reliable data in youth targeted tobacco control advocacy efforts.