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You are here: Home Modules Module Examples Module 1 Examples Example 5 - Socio-ecological assessment: Tobacco-free living and young adults projects
Example 5 - Socio-ecological assessment: Tobacco-free living and young adults projects Print E-mail
Module 1 Examples

Ontario Public Health PractionersWhen planning for this project began in 1999, neither Ottawa nor Ontario had gone smoke-free. The socio-ecological assessment for the project could have looked like this:

a) What factors or determinants may be contributing to or causing the problem?

  • Social environment: teen and youth culture is conducive to smoking.
  • Non-smokers are exposed to smoke except where it’s restricted.
  • Smoking is permitted in public places including in designated areas in bars and restaurants and is allowed on campus in designated areas.
  • Student residences allow smoking in the building; some restrictions exist for certain floors.
  • Students who share rooms negotiate their smoking environment individually.
  • Young adults are more likely to engage in risky health behaviour than others.
  • Students face high social and economic stress; smoking is a coping mechanism for it.
  • People with low incomes are more likely to smoke and students have low incomes; at the same time, many are accumulating debt.
  • Higher cigarette prices lead to reduced smoking by youth.
  • Lower education levels are associated with higher smoking rates. A university education might act as a barrier to smoking uptake.

b) How are these factors or determinants linked?

  • Social environment may influence health practices of university students.
  • Smoking is allowed on campus.
  • Many students can not avoid daily exposure to smoking.
  • Some may be sharing their living space with a smoker for the first time.

c) How do different sectors and levels of the system see the health issue?

  • Students might not consider smoking to be an important issue.
  • Smokers might minimize health hazards of smoking.
  • Some university administrator and health professionals might see the issue mostly as an individual behaviour choice issue, others as a social policy issue. Either view influences the changes and approaches identified.
  • The medical officer of health is committed to making Ottawa smoke-free.
  • University system might not make tobacco reduction a priority, because of other pressing issues (sexual health, alcohol abusem mental health , social integration).

d) What system levels, partners, sectors and jurisdictions must be considered?

  • There is a legislated mandate to reduce smoking rates - provincial jurisdiction.
  • There are experts in tobacco control and quitting programs in the health unit - municipal level.
  • Public health staff have experience working with youth in high schools - educational sector.
  • University and residence administration, residence staff, campus venues, student organizations - university partners.

e) What system levels, partners, sectors and jurisdictions should we think about involving in planning?

  • University health centre
  • University administrators
  • Residence managers
  • Student body (to get buy-in for change).
Last Updated on Sunday, 31 May 2009 18:04