biraghi e. & tortorano a.m. (2010) Tobacco smoking habits among nursing students and the influence of family and peer smoking behaviour. Journal of Advanced Nursing. 66(1), 33–39.
Title. Tobacco smoking habits among nursing students and the influence of family and peer smoking behaviour.
Aim. This paper is a report of a study assessing tobacco smoking habits among nursing students and how these are influenced by family members and peers.
Background. Tobacco smoking among nursing students is a serious problem because of the public role model of these future healthcare professionals.
Methods. The smoking attitude of nursing students attending the 3 year full-time course at the University of Milan in the academic years 2006–2007 and 2007–2008 was investigated. A total of 820 students filled in the self-administered questionnaire and 812 valid questionnaires were returned. The response rate was 87%.
Results. Forty-four percent of the 812 students were tobacco smokers and 7% former smokers. Among the smoking students 75% had at least one smoking parent, 47% had at least one smoking brother or sister and 87% saw smoking friends.
Conclusion. There is an urgent need to implement effective anti-smoking measures among nursing students. Decreasing the number of smokers among healthcare professionals would discourage people from smoking and would increase the credibility of anti-smoking campaigns.