[ Back to EurekAlert! ] Public release date: 23-Nov-2009
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Contact: Graeme Baldwin
graeme.baldwin@biomedcentral.com
44-203-192-2165
BioMed Central

Children unaffected by smoking ban consequences

The smoking ban in Wales has not displaced secondhand smoke from public places into the home. A study of 3500 children from 75 primary schools in Wales, published in the open access journal BMC Public Health, found that they were exposed to similar amounts of secondhand smoke before and after legislation, which should reassure those worried that exposure to smoking at home could increase following the ban.

Dr Jo Holliday and colleagues at Cardiff University's School of Social Sciences carried out the study, funded by the Welsh Assembly Government. They measured the levels of cotinine, a marker of exposure to cigarette smoke, in the saliva of approximately 1750 year 6 children before and after the ban, as well as asking the children about their experiences of passive smoking. Holliday said, "Concerns have been expressed regarding the potential displacement of smoking from public places into the home, affecting non-smokers and, in particular, children. We found that the smoke-free legislation in Wales did not increase second-hand smoke exposure in homes of children aged 10-11. Nevertheless, the home did remain the main source of children's exposure".

The researchers point out that the measured levels of passive smoking still represent a public health concern. According to Holliday, "Almost 40 percent of children had a cotinine concentration above 0.17ng/ml, a level associated with lung dysfunction, and almost six percent of children had salivary cotinine concentrations higher than those of non-smoking Scottish bar workers prior to the introduction of similar legislation in Scotland".

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Notes to Editors:

1. Changes in child exposure to secondhand smoke after implementation of smoke-free legislation in Wales: a repeated cross-sectional study
Jo C Holliday, Graham F Moore and Laurence AR Moore
BMC Public Health (in press)

During embargo, article available here: http://www.biomedcentral.com/imedia/7455125712795238_article.pdf?random=818289

After the embargo, article available at journal website: http://www.biomedcentral.com/bmcpublichealth/

Please name the journal in any story you write. If you are writing for the web, please link to the article. All articles are available free of charge, according to BioMed Central's open access policy.

Article citation and URL available on request at press@biomedcentral.com on the day of publication

2. BMC Public Health is an open access journal publishing original peer-reviewed research articles in the epidemiology of disease and the understanding of all aspects of public health. The journal has a special focus on the social determinants of health, the environmental, behavioral, and occupational correlates of health and disease, and the impact of health policies, practices and interventions on the community. BMC Public Health (ISSN 1471-2458) is indexed/tracked/covered by PubMed, MEDLINE, CAS, EMBASE, Scopus, Current Contents, FSTA, Thomson Reuters (ISI) and Google Scholar.

3. BioMed Central (http://www.biomedcentral.com/) is an STM (Science, Technology and Medicine) publisher which has pioneered the open access publishing model. All peer-reviewed research articles published by BioMed Central are made immediately and freely accessible online, and are licensed to allow redistribution and reuse. BioMed Central is part of Springer Science+Business Media, a leading global publisher in the STM sector.



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