Institute for Public Health, National Institutes of Health, Ministry of Health, Malaysia
Background: Tobacco consumption continues to be the leading cause of preventable deaths globally. The objective of this study was to examine the associaton of selected socio-demographic variables with current tobacco use in five countries that participated in the Phase II Global Adult Tobacco Survey in 2011 - 2012. Materials and Methods: We analysed internationally comparable representative household survey data from 33,482 respondents aged 15 years in Indonesia, Malaysia, Romania, Argentina and Nigeria for determinants of tobacco use within each country. Socio-demographic variables analysed included gender, age, residency, education, wealth index and awareness of smoking health consequences. Current tobacco use was defined as smoking or use of smokeless tobacco daily or occasionally. Results: The overall prevalence of tobacco use varied from 5.5% in Nigeria to 35.7% in Indonesia and was significantly higher among males than females in all five countries. Odds ratios for current tobacco use were significantly higher among males for all countries [with the greatest odds among Indonesian men (OR=67.4, 95% CI: 51.2-88.7)] and among urban dwellers in Romania. The odds of current tobacco use decreased as age increased for all countries except Nigeria where. The reverse was true for Argentina and Nigeria. Significant trends for decreasing tobacco use with increasing educational levels and wealth index were seen in Indonesia, Malaysia and Romania. Significant negative associations between current tobacco use and awareness of adverse health consequences of smoking were found in all countries except Argentina. Conclusions: Males and the socially and economically disadvantaged populations are at the greatest risk of tobacco use. Tobacco control interventions maybe tailored to this segment of population and incorporate educational interventions to increase knowledge of adverse health consequences of smoking.