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Smoking cessation advice and non-pharmacological support in a national sample of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander smokers and ex-smokers

Quitting smoking reduces the risk of smoking-related death, with greater benefits from quitting at a younger age.1 Receiving brief advice to quit from health professionals and more intensive support from specialist clinics and courses, stop-smoking medicines, telephone quitlines, websites and printed materials have been shown to increase successful quitting.28 In Australia, just over half of smokers have been recently advised to quit, and a similar proportion of those who have tried to quit have used stop-smoking medicines.9,10 Fewer smokers are referred to or use other cessation support services.911

In 2012–2013, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adults had 2.5 times the smoking prevalence of other Australian adults, and those who had ever smoked were less likely to have successfully quit (37% v 63%).12 There is a long history of widespread training in how to give brief advice for health professionals working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.13 In recent years, the national Tackling Indigenous Smoking program has increased funding to support this training,…