CHS Published in Tobacco Induced Diseases Journal

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YEREVAN, Armenia — The Turpanjian College of Health Sciences (CHS) of the American University of Armenia (AUA) has published an article in Tobacco Induced Diseases, an open-access, multidisciplinary, peer-reviewed journal that focuses on all aspects of research related to the prevention and control of tobacco use at a global level, with an impact factor of 3.8 (2023) and a citation score of 6.2 (2022). The article is co-authored by Varduhi Hayrumyan, M.S. (MPH ’16); Zhanna Sargsyan, M.S., (MPH ’18); Nour Alayan, R.N., Ph.D.; and Varduhi Petrosyan, M.S., Ph.D. The article is based on the “Smoke-free air coalitions in Armenia and Georgia project: A community randomized trial” (GATHER) project, implemented in partnership with Emory University, George Washington University, the National Institute of Health named after academician S. Avdalbekyan, the National Center for Disease Control and Prevention of the Ministry of Health of Armenia, and the Georgian National Center for Disease Control and Public Health. This multi-year project was supported by the U.S. National Institutes of Health Fogarty International Center and ended in March 2023. CHS has published ten articles to date based on research associated with this project.

The article, titled “The inclusion of e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products in smoke-free home and car rules: A cross-sectional survey of adults in Armenia and Georgia,” examines the integration of e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products (HTPs) into smoke-free restrictions within private settings, such as homes and cars, in two middle-income countries, Armenia and Georgia, with high smoking rates and the recent enactment of nationwide smoke-free policies. The researchers found that approximately three-quarters of participants reported having smoke-free home rules (72.9%) and car rules (81.3%). However, 13.5% of participants excluded e-cigarettes and/or HTPs from their home rules, and 18.7% excluded them from their car rules.

Perceived risk was a significant predictor of including alternative tobacco products or intending to include them in their rules for personal settings. Key social factors, such as the absence of other smokers and presence of children in the home, and living in a country with longer standing public smoke-free restrictions (like Georgia) were also important factors associated with these outcomes.

Collectively, findings from this study highlight the necessity for a multifaceted approach that combines comprehensive policies, policy reinforcement, targeted education, and community engagement to effectively address the evolving challenge of alternative tobacco product use, particularly within private settings.

The AUA Turpanjian College of Health Sciences works actively to improve population health and health services in Armenia and the region through interdisciplinary education and development of health professionals to be leaders in public health, nursing, health services research and evaluation, and health care delivery and management.