Protecting children from secondhand smoke: a mixed-methods feasibility study of a novel smoke-free homes intervention

John Marsh, Ann McNeill, Sarah Lewis, Tim Coleman, Manpreet Bains, Alexandra Larwood, Jacqueline Purdy, Laura Jones

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7 Citations (Scopus)
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Globally, 40% of children under 14 years are regularly exposed to secondhand smoke (SHS), typically in their home. There is limited evidence of the effectiveness of interventions to reduce children’s SHS exposure and so the aim of this study was to test the feasibility and acceptability (rather than the efficacy) of a novel intervention to help parents and carers (caregivers) to reduce their children’s exposure to SHS at home.
A novel multi-component intervention to support caregivers to reduce their children’s SHS exposure at home was tested in a two-phase feasibility study. The 12 week intensive intervention delivered in the home consisted of three components: behavioural support, nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) for temporary abstinence, and feedback on levels of SHS exposure in the form of children’s salivary cotinine (phase 1) or home air quality (PM2.5) (phase 2). Participants were caregivers who smoked inside their home and had at least one child under the age of five years living with them the majority of the time. Mixed-methods were used to explore the acceptability and feasibility of the intervention as well as processes, particularly around recruitment and retention, for an exploratory efficacy trial.
Twelve caregivers completed the study and all received personalised feedback on SHS exposure, behavioural support to help them to make their homes smoke-free, and the majority at least tried NRT. Saliva cotinine results were variable in phase 1 and therefore measures of PM2.5 were used for feedback in phase 2. Behavioural support was well received with personalised feedback reported as being the key motivator for initiating and maintaining behaviour change.
Recruiting disadvantaged caregivers was labour intensive but once recruited this novel intervention was both feasible and acceptable in supporting caregivers to reduce their children’s exposure to SHS at home. It is appropriate to test the efficacy of this novel intervention in an exploratory randomised controlled trial.
Original languageEnglish
Article number53
JournalPilot and Feasibility Studies
Publication statusPublished - 12 Sept 2016


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