Introduction Despite improvements in tobacco control smoking is the leading, preventable risk factor for premature death and disability in Hungary. The purpose of this study was to identify the determinants of smoking and quitting in Hungary.
Methods The first wave of a quantitative longitudinal study was delivered in 2009. A sample of individuals (n=2250) aged 16–70 years was selected from the seven geographical regions of Hungary. The survey was conducted through self-administered questionnaires. χ2 test and one-way ANOVA were applied to compare smokers who attempt to quit with smokers without intentions.
Results One-third (33.2%) of interviewed were current smokers, 17.6% were ex-smokers, and 49.1% non-smokers; the prevalence of smoking was significantly higher in men and lower educated respondents. Actually 48.0% of smokers wanted to quit smoking, 29.5% didn't and 22.5% was uncertain. Age, gender, education and marital status had no effect on behaviour, but the knowledge about the various risks of smoking (p<0.001) and the support for tobacco control in public places (p<0.001) were significantly higher among smokers who wanted to quit smoking.
Conclusion The improvement of knowledge and the implementation of anti-smoking policy can support the decision making about quitting smoking independently from socio-demographic factors.
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