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Surveillance of compliance with tobacco regulations in Örebro County, Sweden: a mixed methods study after the ban of test purchases.

Schölin L, Eriksson C - Subst Abuse Treat Prev Policy (2012)

Bottom Line: Lack of self-monitoring programs was significantly more common in smaller stores/kiosks and at restaurants.Further, the tobacco administrators who worked within the project perceived thematic surveillance as a good method for accomplishing better structure in surveillance work, but not as effective as purchase attempts (mystery shopping).However, the method could be developed further for optimal use and better effect at the retailers.

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Affiliation: School of Health and Medical Sciences, Örebro University, Örebro, Sweden.

ABSTRACT

Background: Tobacco has long been known to be one of the most common reasons for sickness and premature deaths in the world. An important aspect of tobacco use is the youth's access to tobacco, and surveillance visits are one way to make sure how retailers are complying with age limit in the tobacco law. In Örebro County, Sweden, a project to reinforce the tobacco legislation was carried out in 2009-2010. One part of the project was surveillance visits that were done according to three different themes, called thematic surveillance.

Methods: This study is an evaluation of the results from thematic surveillance and has a mixed methods approach. The quantitative analyses concerns protocols from 217 surveillance visits, where questions were asked about three themes (self-monitoring programs; marketing; labeling of products and pricing). In addition, questionnaires filled out by six tobacco administrators who worked within the project were analyzed qualitatively by content analysis in order to study their perceptions and opinions of the project.

Results: This study shows that half of the visited retailers had self-monitoring programs. Lack of self-monitoring programs was significantly more common in smaller stores/kiosks and at restaurants. Further, the tobacco administrators who worked within the project perceived thematic surveillance as a good method for accomplishing better structure in surveillance work, but not as effective as purchase attempts (mystery shopping).

Conclusions: Thematic surveillance was perceived as positive and the method was also regarded to be a good way to work with surveillance. However, the method could be developed further for optimal use and better effect at the retailers. It is clear that people who work with tobacco prevention at the local level in Örebro County want to use purchase attempts as a surveillance method, and that they believe that purchase attempts is the best way to make sure if store comply with the tobacco law.

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Type of sales places in the municipalities.
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Figure 2: Type of sales places in the municipalities.

Mentions: The sales places that were visited within thematic surveillance were divided into four categories; grocery chains, smaller stores (i.e. not grocery chains) and kiosks, gas stations, and restaurants and other types of sales places (Figure 2). There were differences over the municipalities regarding proportions of the different types of sales places. A higher proportion of grocery chains were apparent in, for example Lekeberg, while none of the visited places in Lindesberg was a grocery chain.


Surveillance of compliance with tobacco regulations in Örebro County, Sweden: a mixed methods study after the ban of test purchases.

Schölin L, Eriksson C - Subst Abuse Treat Prev Policy (2012)

Type of sales places in the municipalities.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3298798&req=5

Figure 2: Type of sales places in the municipalities.
Mentions: The sales places that were visited within thematic surveillance were divided into four categories; grocery chains, smaller stores (i.e. not grocery chains) and kiosks, gas stations, and restaurants and other types of sales places (Figure 2). There were differences over the municipalities regarding proportions of the different types of sales places. A higher proportion of grocery chains were apparent in, for example Lekeberg, while none of the visited places in Lindesberg was a grocery chain.

Bottom Line: Lack of self-monitoring programs was significantly more common in smaller stores/kiosks and at restaurants.Further, the tobacco administrators who worked within the project perceived thematic surveillance as a good method for accomplishing better structure in surveillance work, but not as effective as purchase attempts (mystery shopping).However, the method could be developed further for optimal use and better effect at the retailers.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Health and Medical Sciences, Örebro University, Örebro, Sweden.

ABSTRACT

Background: Tobacco has long been known to be one of the most common reasons for sickness and premature deaths in the world. An important aspect of tobacco use is the youth's access to tobacco, and surveillance visits are one way to make sure how retailers are complying with age limit in the tobacco law. In Örebro County, Sweden, a project to reinforce the tobacco legislation was carried out in 2009-2010. One part of the project was surveillance visits that were done according to three different themes, called thematic surveillance.

Methods: This study is an evaluation of the results from thematic surveillance and has a mixed methods approach. The quantitative analyses concerns protocols from 217 surveillance visits, where questions were asked about three themes (self-monitoring programs; marketing; labeling of products and pricing). In addition, questionnaires filled out by six tobacco administrators who worked within the project were analyzed qualitatively by content analysis in order to study their perceptions and opinions of the project.

Results: This study shows that half of the visited retailers had self-monitoring programs. Lack of self-monitoring programs was significantly more common in smaller stores/kiosks and at restaurants. Further, the tobacco administrators who worked within the project perceived thematic surveillance as a good method for accomplishing better structure in surveillance work, but not as effective as purchase attempts (mystery shopping).

Conclusions: Thematic surveillance was perceived as positive and the method was also regarded to be a good way to work with surveillance. However, the method could be developed further for optimal use and better effect at the retailers. It is clear that people who work with tobacco prevention at the local level in Örebro County want to use purchase attempts as a surveillance method, and that they believe that purchase attempts is the best way to make sure if store comply with the tobacco law.

Show MeSH