“It Needs a Full-Time Dedicated Person to Do This Job in Our Local Communities with Our Aboriginal Health Services”—Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers and Practitioners Perspectives on Supporting Smoking Cessation during Pregnancy

Amanual Getnet Mersha*, Raglan Maddox, Sian Maidment, Kade Booth, Karl Briscoe, Paul Hussein, Hayley Longbottom, Yael Bar-Zeev, Michelle Kennedy

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women deserve improved smoking cessation support. Aboriginal health workers (AHW) and practitioners (AHP) can be central to the provision of culturally safe smoking cessation care (SCC). The objective of this study is to explore attitudes and the perceived role of AHWs/AHPs toward providing SCC to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander pregnant women. Method: A mixed-method study using quantitative and qualitative data was conducted among AHW/AHPs in 2021 across Australia. Descriptive and analytical statistics were used to characterise AHWs’/AHPs’ attitudes towards SCC and to evaluate the factors associated with perceptions of who is best placed to provide SCC. Results: From the total AHW/AHP workforce, 21.2% (223) completed the survey. Less than half (48.4%) believed that AHW/AHP were best placed to provide SCC for pregnant women. The majority believed that group-based supports (82.5%) and cultural support programs (63.7%) were the best strategies to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander pregnant women to quit smoking. Conclusion: This study highlights the need to enhance SCC offered to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander pregnant women. A targeted workforce dedicated to smoking cessation should be resourced, including funding, standardised training, and ongoing SCC support tailored to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander pregnant women.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number28
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume20
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 20 Dec 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 by the authors.

Keywords

  • aboriginal health practitioners
  • aboriginal health workers
  • smoking cessation
  • smoking in pregnancy
  • tobacco control

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