A cross-sectional analysis of factors associated with the intention to engage in tobacco treatment among inpatients in a state psychiatric hospital

C. T.C. Okoli, J. K. Otachi, A. Manuel, M. Woods

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


What is known on the subject?: People admitted to psychiatric facilities have high rates of tobacco use and hospitalizations present an opportunity for patients to have conversations about tobacco use treatment. Clinicians may believe that people with mental illnesses are not interested in quitting or that they do not understand the importance of treatment. Positive attitudes towards tobacco treatment, viewing that participating in treatment is normal care, and feeling that one is quite able to participate in such treatment predicts intentions to participate in treatment, which, in turn, predicts actual participation. What does this paper add to existing knowledge?: Psychiatric patients who use tobacco use report poor prior involvement with tobacco treatment. Positive attitudes towards, encouraging opinions of other people about, and having a sense of control over taking part in tobacco treatment increases plans to engage in treatment. Having a sense of control in taking part in tobacco treatment is strongly associated with prior experiences with evidence-based treatment. What are the implications for practice?: Because psychiatric hospitalizations are an opportunity for addressing tobacco use and treatment, clinicians should be prepared to support willing patients, especially those with prior substance use histories. Support should include providing them with information regarding tobacco treatment options during their hospital stay and ways that they can continue to receive care after discharge. Clinicians should be promoters of pro-tobacco treatment attitudes and supporting patients’ sense of control over participating in treatment during hospitalization. Abstract: Introduction Hospitalized tobacco users with mental illnesses (MI) may face several barriers to stopping smoking. However, motivational factors that affect the intention to engage in tobacco treatment have been shown to predict actual engagement. Aim To use the Theory of Planned Behavior to assess intentions to and prior experiences of engaging in evidence-based tobacco treatment among hospitalized individuals with MI. Method A cross-sectional survey was conducted among 115 patients in a state psychiatric hospital. Multivariate analyses were used to examine associations with the intentions and prior experiences of engaging in tobacco treatment. Results After controlling for demographic and smoking history, attitudes, subjective norms and perceived behavioural control towards engaging in tobacco treatment were significantly associated with intentions towards treatment engagement. Only higher scores on perceived behavioural control and lower education levels were associated with reported prior experiences of tobacco treatment. Discussion The low prior treatment engagement scores, but relatively higher intention to engage scores among participants suggests the need for deliberate support for evidence-based tobacco treatment during psychiatric hospitalizations. Implications for practice Clinician training in tobacco treatment can promote self-efficacy to engage patients while supporting patients’ control so that tobacco treatment is an expected component of psychiatric care.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14-25
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


  • acute mental health
  • brief interventions
  • evidence-based practice
  • tobacco

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatric Mental Health


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