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Drug Abuse Staff and Clients Smoking Together: A Shared Addiction.

Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment 2017;76:64-68. [doi: 10.1016/j.jsat.2017.01.014]

Joseph R. Guydish, PhD (University of California, San Francisco, WS Node), Thao Le (University of California, San Francisco, WS Node), Barbara K. Campbell, PhD (Oregon Health & Science University, WS Node), Deborah Yip (University of California, San Francisco, WS Node), Suzhe Ji (University of Nevada, Reno), Kevin L. Delucchi, PhD (University of California, San Francisco, WS Node).

Smoking is endemic in drug abuse treatment populations, and smoking prevalence in this population appears unresponsive to existing tobacco control strategies. Clinical and policy guidelines encourage programs to address smoking among clients, and research has identified key barriers to doing so. This report explores the practice of staff and clients smoking together in drug treatment programs, and how this practice is associated with other tobacco-related measures. Clients (N=1113) were surveyed and program directors were interviewed in a national sample of 24 drug abuse treatment programs affiliated with the NIDA Clinical Trials Network. Clients were asked whether they observed staff and clients smoking together in their program and, using program as the unit of analysis, this measure was tested for its association with client-level and program-level tobacco-related outcomes. Higher rates of staff and client smoking together were associated with higher staff smoking prevalence (p=0.006), lower rates of client thoughts about quitting in the next 30 days (p=0.027), more negative client attitudes toward quitting smoking (p=0.004), and with clients receiving fewer tobacco-related services (p=0.024).

Conclusions: These findings illuminate an actionable, low-cost policy intervention to address smoking in drug abuse treatment: prohibiting the practice of staff smoking together with clients. There may be challenges to face in changing a practice that is culturally accepted in some program (for example, some believe that smoking together builds rapport/trust). Despite these challenges, however, there is no reason to continue the practice of staff and clients smoking together. In the interest of the health of clients whom they serve, counselors, program directors, state regulatory agencies, and federal funding agencies should act to end this practice. (Article (Peer-Reviewed), PDF, English, 2017)

Keywords: Attitudes of health personnel | Counselors | CTN platform/ancillary study | Smoking cessation | Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment (journal)

Document No: 1252, PMID: 28143680, PMCID: PMC5366098.

Submitted by the CTN Dissemination Librarians (2/8/2017).

Campbell, Barbara K. mail
Delucchi, Kevin L.
Guydish, Joseph R. mail
Ji, Suzhe
Le, Thao
Yip, Deborah
Western States www

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Supported by a grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse to the University of Washington Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute.
The materials on this site have neither been created nor reviewed by NIDA.
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