Smoking counseling practices of physicians in the United Arab Emirates

Source of Publication

Global Health Promotion


Background. Despite the cost effectiveness of physician smoking cessation counseling, many physicians do not adhere to current clinical practice guidelines. Methods. A cross-sectional mail survey was conducted in a sample of general practitioners in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), emirates of Sharjah, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, to document cessation-counseling practices and identify correlates of these activities. Results. Of 391 eligible GPs, 218 (56%) completed the questionnaire. Despite favorable beliefs/attitudes about cessation counseling, less than half of GPs (47%) indicated that they have the skills to help their patients quit smoking and only 24% knew of community resources to refer patients to. GPs who perceived physician barriers in offering smoking counseling as very important were significantly less likely to ascertain smoking status of most of their patients (OR: 0.28, 95% CI: 0.09,0.88). Moreover, high self-efficacy and favorable beliefs/attitudes were significantly associated with high level of counseling completeness (OR: 4.44, 95% CI: 1.21, 16.37; OR: 3.78, 95% CI: 1.25, 11.35; respectively). Conclusion. Support, training and intervention programs to overcome lack of awareness and knowledge, unfavorable beliefs/attitudes, and low self-efficacy could increase and enhance cessation-counseling practices among general practitioners in the UAE. © 2010, SAGE Publications. All rights reserved.

Document Type


First Page


Last Page


Publication Date