Smoking among Doctors in a Medical School Hospital
The purpose of this study was to investigate smoking prevalence and attitudes toward smoking among the doctors of our medical school hospital. A survey questionnaire with 15 questions was given to 272 male doctors (ladder faculty: 34 professors, 20 assistant professors and 81 lecturers; research and clinical faculty: 63 assistants and 74 residents) in January, 1994. The response rate for the ladder faculty was 70.4%, while that for the research and clinical faculty was 49.6%. The overall response rate was 59.9%. In the sample surveyed, 29.4% of the doctors were smokers, 20.9%, ex-smokers and 49.7%, nonsmokers. The percentage of smokers among the ladder faculty stood at 23.2% and that among the research and clinical faculty at 38.2%. Smoking was more prevalent among the younger doctors (40.6% for <35 years of age, 24.2% for 35-49 and 18.2% for ≧50), while the rate of ex-smokers was higher in the older age groups. The long-term health risks to themselves was the most important factor in giving up smoking. As for the opposition to passive smoking, 85.3% of ex-smokers, 74.1% of nonsmokers and 33.3% of smokers answered that it made them feel unpleasant or that they had some symptoms. Of the doctors who do not smoke, 44.4% of nonsmokers and 41.2% of ex-smokers stated that they seriously advised patients to quit smoking, but only 8.3% of doctors who smoke answered that they did so. Even worse, about one-third of smoking doctors seldom advised patients to stop smoking. If doctors smoke cigarettes themselves, it is difficult for them to advise their patients to quit smoking. We hope that smoking among doctors in the research and clinical faculty will decline to a similar percentage as that in the ladder faculty in the near future.