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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 28  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 237-241

Is occupation the “driving force” for tobacco consumption? A cross-sectional study to assess prevalence, patterns, and attitude towards tobacco use among long-distance bus drivers and conductors in Western Maharashtra

Department of Community Medicine, Armed Forces Medical College, Pune, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Arun Kumar Yadav
Department of Community Medicine, Armed Forces Medical College, Pune - 411 040, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ipj.ipj_72_20

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Background: Tobacco use remains a major cause of preventable deaths worldwide. The recent Global Adult Tobacco Survey 2016–2017 has shown the prevalence of tobacco use among Indian population to be 28.6%. In Maharashtra, 35.5% of all adult males either smoke tobacco or use some form of smokeless tobacco. Not much data are available on tobacco use with respect to different occupations in India, though risk of tobacco use is known to be higher among individuals in certain occupations. Methods: This cross-sectional descriptive study was conducted among 190 long-distance bus drivers and conductors of long route buses departing from one of the main bus stations of the State Transport Corporation in Pune city. Data were collected using a pretested, structured questionnaire by interview method. Results: Prevalence of tobacco consumption (TC) among the respondents was 55.8% (95% confidence interval; 48.4–63). Among the tobacco users, 54% reported initiation at age <18 years “peer pressure” and “curiosity” were the main reasons for initiation while “feeling alert” and “feeling mature” were reasons for continued use. A large proportion (74.5%) of the respondents expressed their intention to quit tobacco in the near future. Conclusion: Long-distance bus drivers and conductors showed a high prevalence of TC which may be linked to certain occupation-related factors. Targeted tobacco cessation activities at workplaces may be considered as a strategy for better impact of tobacco control activities in India.

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