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1.  Ultra high risk of psychosis on committal to a young offender prison: an unrecognised opportunity for early intervention 
BMC Psychiatry  2012;12:100.
Background
The ultra high risk state for psychosis has not been studied in young offender populations. Prison populations have higher rates of psychiatric morbidity and substance use disorders. Due to the age profile of young offenders one would expect to find a high prevalence of individuals with pre-psychotic or ultra-high risk mental states for psychosis (UHR). Accordingly young offender institutions offer an opportunity for early interventions which could result in improved long term mental health, social and legal outcomes. In the course of establishing a mental health in-reach service into Ireland’s only young offender prison, we sought to estimate unmet mental health needs.
Methods
Every third new committal to a young offenders prison was interviewed using the Comprehensive Assessment of At-Risk Mental States (CAARMS) to identify the Ultra High Risk (UHR) state and a structured interview for assessing drug and alcohol misuse according to DSM-IV-TR criteria, the Developmental Understanding of Drug Misuse and Dependence - Short Form (DUNDRUM-S).
Results
Over a twelve month period 171 young male offenders aged 16 to 20 were assessed. Of these 39 (23%, 95% confidence interval 18% to 30%) met UHR criteria. UHR states peaked at 18 years, were associated with lower SOFAS scores for social and occupational function and were also associated with multiple substance misuse. The relationship with lower SOFAS scores persisted even when co-varying for multiple substance misuse.
Conclusions
Although psychotic symptoms are common in community samples of children and adolescents, the prevalence of the UHR state in young offenders was higher than reported for community samples. The association with impaired function also suggests that this may be part of a developing disorder. Much more attention should be paid to the relationship of UHR states to substance misuse and to the health needs of young offenders.
doi:10.1186/1471-244X-12-100
PMCID: PMC3481442  PMID: 22863073
Young offenders; Ultra high risk; Psychosis; Substance misuse
2.  An investigation of the smoking behaviours of parents before, during and after the birth of their children in Taiwan 
BMC Public Health  2008;8:67.
Background
Although many studies have investigated the negative effects of parental smoking on children and Taiwan has started campaigns to promote smoke-free homes, little is known about the smoking behaviours of Taiwanese parents during the childbearing period. To help fill the gap, this study investigated Taiwanese parents' smoking behaviours before, during and after the birth of their children, particularly focusing on smoking cessation during pregnancy and relapse after childbirth.
Methods
We used data from the Survey of Health Status of Women and Children, conducted by Taiwan's National Health Research Institutes in 2000. After excluding survey respondents with missing information about their smoking behaviours, our sample consisted of 3,109 women who were married at the time of interview and had at least one childbearing experience between March 1, 1995 and February 28, 1999. Data on parental smoking behaviour in the six months before pregnancy, during pregnancy, and in the first year after childbirth were extracted from the survey and analysed by descriptive statistics as well as logistic regression.
Results
Four percent of the mothers and sixty percent of the fathers smoked before the conception of their first child. The educational attainment and occupation of the parents were associated with their smoking status before the first pregnancy in the family. Over 80% of smoking mothers did not quit during pregnancy, and almost all of the smoking fathers continued tobacco use while their partners were pregnant. Over two thirds of the women who stopped smoking during their pregnancies relapsed soon after childbirth. Very few smoking men stopped tobacco use while their partners were pregnant, and over a half of those who quit started to smoke again soon after their children were born.
Conclusion
Among Taiwanese women who had childbearing experiences in the late 1990s, few smoked. Of those who smoked, few quit during pregnancy. Most of those who quit relapsed in the first year after childbirth. The smoking prevalence was high among the husbands of these Taiwanese women, and almost all of these smoking fathers continued tobacco use while their partners were pregnant. It is important to advocate the benefits of a smoke-free home to Taiwanese parents-to-be and parents with young children, especially the fathers. The government should take advantage of its free prenatal care and well-child care services to do this. In addition to educational campaigns through the media, the government can request physicians to promote smoke-free homes when they deliver prenatal care and well-child care. This could help reduce young children's health risks from their mothers' smoking during pregnancy and second-hand smoke at home.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-8-67
PMCID: PMC2289813  PMID: 18284702
3.  The identification and management of ADHD offenders within the criminal justice system: a consensus statement from the UK Adult ADHD Network and criminal justice agencies 
BMC Psychiatry  2011;11:32.
The UK Adult ADHD Network (UKAAN) was founded by a group of mental health specialists who have experience delivering clinical services for adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) within the National Health Service (NHS). UKAAN aims to support mental health professionals in the development of services for adults with ADHD by the promotion of assessment and treatment protocols. One method of achieving these aims has been to sponsor conferences and workshops on adult ADHD.
This consensus statement is the result of a Forensic Meeting held in November 2009, attended by senior representatives of the Department of Health (DoH), Forensic Mental Health, Prison, Probation, Courts and Metropolitan Police services. The objectives of the meeting were to discuss ways of raising awareness about adult ADHD, and its recognition, assessment, treatment and management within these respective services. Whilst the document draws on the UK experience, with some adaptations it can be used as a template for similar local actions in other countries.
It was concluded that bringing together experts in adult ADHD and the Criminal Justice System (CJS) will be vital to raising awareness of the needs of ADHD offenders at every stage of the offender pathway. Joint working and commissioning within the CJS is needed to improve awareness and understanding of ADHD offenders to ensure that individuals are directed to appropriate care and rehabilitation. General Practitioners (GPs), whilst ideally placed for early intervention, should not be relied upon to provide this service as vulnerable offenders often have difficulty accessing primary care services. Moreover once this hurdle has been overcome and ADHD in offenders has been identified, a second challenge will be to provide treatment and ensure continuity of care. Future research must focus on proof of principle studies to demonstrate that identification and treatment confers health gain, safeguards individual's rights, improves engagement in offender rehabilitation programmes, reduces institutional behavioural disturbance and, ultimately, leads to crime reduction. In time this will provide better justice for both offenders and society.
doi:10.1186/1471-244X-11-32
PMCID: PMC3050801  PMID: 21332994
4.  Rehabilitating antisocial personalities: treatment through self-governance strategies 
Offenders with antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) are widely assumed to reject psychotherapeutic intervention. Some commentators, therefore, argue that those with the disorder are better managed in the criminal justice system, where, following the introduction of indeterminate sentences, engagement with psychological treatment is coercively linked to the achievement of parole. By comparison, National Institute of Clinical Excellence guidelines on the management and treatment of ASPD recommend that those who are treatment seeking should be considered for admission to specialist psychiatric hospitals. The rationale is that prison-based interventions are underresourced, and the treatment of ASPD is underprioritised. The justification is that offenders with ASPD can be rehabilitated, if they are motivated. One problem, however, is that little is known about why offenders with ASPD seek treatment or what effect subsequent treatment has on their self-understanding. The aim of this paper is to address these unresolved issues. It draws on the findings of Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) funded qualitative study examining the experiences of sentenced male offenders admitted to a specialist personality disorder ward within the medium secure estate and the medical practitioners who treat them. The data are analysed with reference to Michel Foucault's work on governmentality and strategy in power relations. Two arguments are advanced: first, offenders with ASPD are motivated by legal coercive pressures to implement a variety of Foucauldian-type strategies to give the false impression of treatment progress. Second, and related, treatment does not result in changes in self-understanding in the resistive client with ASPD. This presupposes that, in respect of this group at least, Foucault was mistaken in his claim that resistive behaviours merely mask the effectiveness of treatment norms over time. Nevertheless, the paper concludes that specialist treatment in the hospital setting can effect changes in the resistive offender's self-understanding, but not if the completion of treatment results, as is commonplace, in his prison readmission.
doi:10.1080/14789949.2012.752517
PMCID: PMC3756620  PMID: 24009471
antisocial personality disorder; treatment; Mental Health Act 1983; Indeterminate Sentence for Public Protection; parole; governmentality
5.  The Effects of Childhood Maltreatment on Violent Injuries and Premature Death During Young Adulthood Among Urban High-Risk Men 
Objective
To assess childhood maltreatment as a risk factor for violent injuries and premature death in young adulthood and whether these associations are mediated by adolescent heavy drinking, hard drug use, hard drug selling, and violent offending.
Design
A prospective longitudinal study of boys followed from childhood into young adulthood.
Setting
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Participants
A total 1,009 men of the Pittsburgh Youth Study
Main Outcome Measures
Premature deaths between ages 18 and 38 from the Social Security Death Index and self-reports of violent injuries inflicted by gunshot or knife between ages 18 and 28.
Results
Young men who experienced childhood maltreatment, compared to their counterparts who did not experience it, had a greater risk of violent injuries (relative risk [RR], 1.61; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.01–2.35) and death (hazard ratio, [HR], 2.85; 95% CI, 1.37–5.93) during young adulthood. Adolescent violent offending and hard drug selling explained the association between childhood maltreatment and violent injuries, and violent offending partially accounted for the association between childhood maltreatment and premature death. Although adolescent violent offending predicted both outcomes, maltreated boys still had an increased risk of premature death (HR, 2.54; 95% CI, 1.21–5.34) after accounting for their adolescent violence.
Conclusions
Childhood maltreatment significantly predicts premature death and violent injuries during young adulthood. These associations are partially explained by adolescent involvement in violence and drug dealing. Targeted interventions for maltreated boys to reduce their involvement in adolescent deviant behaviors may help decrease their risks for later serious injuries and premature death.
doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2012.244
PMCID: PMC3587734  PMID: 22566518
6.  Adverse Childhood Experiences and Adult Criminality: How Long Must We Live before We Possess Our Own Lives? 
The Permanente Journal  2013;17(2):44-48.
Subjects (151) from 4 different offender groups (nonsexual child abusers, domestic violence offenders, sexual offenders, and stalkers) referred for treatment at an outpatient clinic in San Diego, CA, after conviction in criminal court, completed the ACE Questionnaire. The offender group reported nearly 4 times as many adverse events in childhood than an adult male normative sample. In addition, convicted sexual offenders and child abusers were more likely to report experiencing sexual abuse in childhood than other offender types.
Background:
Empirical research associated with the Kaiser Permanente and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study has demonstrated that ACE are associated with a range of negative outcomes in adulthood, including physical and mental health disorders and aggressive behavior.
Methods:
Subjects from 4 different offender groups (N = 151) who were referred for treatment at an outpatient clinic in San Diego, CA, subsequent to conviction in criminal court, completed the ACE Questionnaire. Groups (nonsexual child abusers, domestic violence offenders, sexual offenders, and stalkers) were compared on the incidence of ACE, and comparisons were made between the group offenders and a normative sample.
Results:
Results indicated that the offender group reported nearly four times as many adverse events in childhood than an adult male normative sample. Eight of ten events were found at significantly higher levels among the criminal population. In addition, convicted sexual offenders and child abusers were more likely to report experiencing sexual abuse in childhood than other offender types.
Conclusions:
On the basis of a review of the literature and current findings, criminal behavior can be added to the host of negative outcomes associated with scores on the ACE Questionnaire. Childhood adversity is associated with adult criminality. We suggest that to decrease criminal recidivism, treatment interventions must focus on the effects of early life experiences.
doi:10.7812/TPP/12-072
PMCID: PMC3662280  PMID: 23704843
7.  REENTRY OF YOUNG OFFENDERS FROM THE JUSTICE SYSTEM: A Developmental Perspective 
This article presents a developmental perspective on the reentry of young offenders into the community. We begin with a discussion of the psychosocial tasks of late adolescence. Next, we discuss contextual influences on the successful negotiation of these psychosocial tasks. Third, we examine whether and to what extent the contexts to which young offenders are exposed in the justice system are likely to facilitate normative psychosocial development. Finally, we argue that the psychosocial development of youthful offenders is disrupted, or “arrested,” by their experiences within the justice system. Interventions designed to facilitate the successful reentry of young offenders into the community must be informed by what we know about healthy psychosocial development in late adolescence.
doi:10.1177/1541204003260045
PMCID: PMC2813457  PMID: 20119512
youth reentry; community reintegration; youth incarceration
8.  Screening for personality disorder in incarcerated adolescent boys: preliminary validation of an adolescent version of the standardised assessment of personality – abbreviated scale (SAPAS-AV) 
BMC Psychiatry  2012;12:94.
Background
Personality disorder (PD) is associated with significant functional impairment and an elevated risk of violent and suicidal behaviour. The prevalence of PD in populations of young offenders is likely to be high. However, because the assessment of PD is time-consuming, it is not routinely assessed in this population. A brief screen for the identification of young people who might warrant further detailed assessment of PD could be particularly valuable for clinicians and researchers working in juvenile justice settings.
Method
We adapted a rapid screen for the identification of PD in adults (Standardised Assessment of Personality – Abbreviated Scale; SAPAS) for use with adolescents and then carried out a study of the reliability and validity of the adapted instrument in a sample of 80 adolescent boys in secure institutions. Participants were administered the screen and shortly after an established diagnostic interview for DSM-IV PDs. Nine days later the screen was readministered.
Results
A score of 3 or more on the screening interview correctly identified the presence of DSM-IV PD in 86% of participants, yielding a sensitivity and specificity of 0.87 and 0.86 respectively. Internal consistency was modest but comparable to the original instrument. 9-days test-retest reliability for the total score was excellent. Convergent validity correlations with the total number of PD criteria were large.
Conclusion
This study provides preliminary evidence of the validity, reliability, and usefulness of the screen in secure institutions for adolescent male offenders. It can be used in juvenile offender institutions with limited resources, as a brief, acceptable, staff-administered routine screen to identify individuals in need of further assessment of PD or by researchers conducting epidemiological surveys.
doi:10.1186/1471-244X-12-94
PMCID: PMC3507652  PMID: 22846474
Personality disorder; Personality assessment; Screening; Psychiatric epidemiology; Adolescence; Aggression; Juvenile offenders
9.  Offending, Substance Use, and Cohabitation in Young Adulthood* 
Over half of young adults have cohabited, but relatively little is known about the role delinquency and substance use play in youths’ odds of cohabiting as well as the implications of cohabitation for early adult offending and substance use. This study focuses on the reciprocal relationship between cohabitation during late adolescence and young adulthood and self-reported offending and substance use. Using longitudinal data, we find that net of traditional predictors delinquency involvement is associated with increased odds of cohabitation and cohabiting at younger ages while substance use is not related to cohabiting during early adulthood. Further analysis indicates that cohabitation is associated with lower reports of substance use. However, cohabitation is not associated with self-reported offending. The results help to unravel the connection between cohabitation experience, offending and substance use, and early adult outcomes.
doi:10.1111/j.1573-7861.2010.01212.x
PMCID: PMC3045051  PMID: 21359092
offending; substance use; juvenile delinquency; cohabitation
10.  Transnational Tobacco Company Interests in Smokeless Tobacco in Europe: Analysis of Internal Industry Documents and Contemporary Industry Materials 
PLoS Medicine  2013;10(9):e1001506.
In light lobbying by transnational tobacco companies to remove the European Union ban on the sale of snus (a smokeless tobacco product), Silvy Peeters and Anna Gilmore explore the motivation behind tobacco companies' interests in smokeless tobacco products in Europe.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Background
European Union (EU) legislation bans the sale of snus, a smokeless tobacco (SLT) which is considerably less harmful than smoking, in all EU countries other than Sweden. To inform the current review of this legislation, this paper aims to explore transnational tobacco company (TTC) interests in SLT and pure nicotine in Europe from the 1970s to the present, comparing them with TTCs' public claims of support for harm reduction.
Methods and Results
Internal tobacco industry documents (in total 416 documents dating from 1971 to 2009), obtained via searching the online Legacy Tobacco Documents Library, were analysed using a hermeneutic approach. This library comprises documents obtained via litigation in the US and does not include documents from Imperial Tobacco, Japan Tobacco International, or Swedish Match. To help overcome this limitation and provide more recent data, we triangulated our documentary findings with contemporary documentation including TTC investor presentations. The analysis demonstrates that British American Tobacco explored SLT opportunities in Europe from 1971 driven by regulatory threats and health concerns, both likely to impact cigarette sales negatively, and the potential to create a new form of tobacco use among those no longer interested in taking up smoking. Young people were a key target. TTCs did not, however, make SLT investments until 2002, a time when EU cigarette volumes started declining, smoke-free legislation was being introduced, and public health became interested in harm reduction. All TTCs have now invested in snus (and recently in pure nicotine), yet both early and recent snus test markets appear to have failed, and little evidence was found in TTCs' corporate materials that snus is central to their business strategy.
Conclusions
There is clear evidence that BAT's early interest in introducing SLT in Europe was based on the potential for creating an alternative form of tobacco use in light of declining cigarette sales and social restrictions on smoking, with young people a key target. We conclude that by investing in snus, and recently nicotine, TTCs have eliminated competition between cigarettes and lower-risk products, thus helping maintain the current market balance in favour of (highly profitable) cigarettes while ensuring TTCs' long-term future should cigarette sales decline further and profit margins be eroded.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Every year, about 5 million people die from cancer, heart disease, and other tobacco-related diseases. In recent years, to reduce this growing loss of life, international and national bodies have drawn up various tobacco control conventions and directives. For example, the European Union (EU) Directives on tobacco control call for member states to ban tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship and to adopt taxation policies aimed at reducing tobacco consumption. The 2001 EU Tobacco Products Directive also bans the sale of snus, a form of smokeless tobacco (SLT), in all EU countries except Sweden. Snus, which originated in Sweden in the early 19th century, is a moist tobacco product that is placed under the upper lip. Although snus is considerably less harmful than smoking, the sale of snus was banned in the EU in 1992 because of fears that it might cause cancer and was being marketed to young people. When Sweden joined the EU in 1994, exemption from the ban was made a condition of the membership treaty.
Why Was This Study Done?
Transnational tobacco companies (TTCs) have been investing in European snus manufacturers since 2002 and more recently in pure nicotine products, and it has been suggested that, faced with declining cigarette markets in Europe and elsewhere, TTCs are preparing for a “post-cigarette era”. Since 2008, TTCs have been lobbying EU member states and the European Commission to remove the ban on snus sales, arguing that public health would be improved if governments allowed potentially reduced-harm products like snus onto the market. At the end of 2012, however, the European Commission proposed that the ban on snus sales should be continued. Here, to help inform this controversial policy debate, the researchers explore the interest of TTCs in SLT and pure nicotine in Europe from the 1970s to the present by examining internal tobacco documents and compare these interests with public claims of support for harm reduction made by TTCs.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
By searching the Legacy Tobacco Documents Library (internal tobacco industry documents released following US litigation cases), the researchers identified 416 documents that detail the historical interest of TTCs in SLT and pure nicotine and their efforts to enter European markets, and to influence national and EU public-health policy. The researchers analyzed these documents using a “hermeneutic” approach—methodical reading and re-reading of the documents to identify themes and sub-themes. Finally, they used TTC investor presentations and other documents to confirm these themes and to provide recent data on TTC investment in SLT. British American Tobacco (BAT) explored the opportunities for marketing SLT products in Europe from 1971 onwards. This exploration was driven by regulatory threats and health concerns, both of which were likely to impact tobacco sales, and by the potential to create a new form of tobacco use among people no longer interested in taking up smoking. TTCs did not begin to invest in SLT, however, until 2002, a time when EU cigarette sale volumes started to decline, smoke-free legislation was being introduced, and tobacco harm reduction first became a major public-health issue. All the TTCs have now invested in snus even though snus test markets appear to have failed and even though there is little evidence in corporate materials that snus is central to the business strategy of TTCs.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings suggest that BAT's early interest in SLT in Europe was driven by business concerns and was based on the potential for creating an alternative form of tobacco use among people—particularly young people—who would no longer take up smoking because of health concerns. They also suggest that TTC investments in snus were defensive—by buying up snus manufacturers and more recently nicotine producers, TTCs have eliminated competition between cigarettes and lower-risk products, thereby helping to maintain the current market balance in favor of cigarettes while ensuring the long-term future of TTCs should cigarette sales decline further. Although these findings are limited by the possibility that some relevant documents may have been omitted from this analysis, they nevertheless raise the concern that, if TTC investment in SLT continues, competition between cigarettes and SLT will reduce the potential for harm reduction to benefit public health. Legalization of snus sales in the European Union may therefore have considerably less benefit than envisaged.
Additional Information
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001506.
The World Health Organization provides information about the dangers of tobacco (in several languages) and about the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, an international treaty for tobacco control; for information about the tobacco industry's influence on policy, see the 2009 World Health Organization report Tobacco interference with tobacco control
Details of European Union legislation on the manufacture, presentation, and sale of tobacco products is available (in several languages)
Wikipedia has pages on tobacco harm reduction and on snus (note: Wikipedia is a free online encyclopedia that anyone can edit; available in several languages)
The Legacy Tobacco Documents Library is a searchable public database of tobacco company internal documents detailing their advertising, manufacturing, marketing, sales, and scientific activities
The UK Centre for Tobacco Control Studies is a network of UK universities that undertakes original research, policy development, advocacy, and teaching and training in the field of tobacco control
SmokeFree, a website provided by the UK National Health Service, offers advice on quitting smoking and includes personal stories from people who have stopped smoking
Smokefree.gov, from the US National Cancer Institute, offers online tools and resources to help people quit smoking
TobaccoTactics.org, an online resource managed by the University of Bath, provides up-to-date information on the tobacco industry and their tactics to influence tobacco regulation
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001506
PMCID: PMC3769209  PMID: 24058299
11.  Developmental Trajectories of Offending: Validation and Prediction to Young Adult Alcohol Use, Drug Use, and Depressive Symptoms 
Development and psychopathology  2005;17(1):251-270.
This longitudinal study extended previous work of Wiesner and Capaldi (2003) by examining the validity of differing offending pathways and the prediction from the pathways to substance use and depressive symptoms for 204 young men. Findings from this study indicated good external validity of the offending trajectories. Further, substance use and depressive symptoms in young adulthood (i.e., ages 23-24 through 25-26 years) varied depending on different trajectories of offending from early adolescence to young adulthood (i.e., ages 12-13 through 23-24 years), even after controlling for antisocial propensity, parental criminality, demographic factors, and prior levels of each outcome. Specifically, chronic high-level offenders had higher levels of depressive symptoms and engaged more often in drug use compared with very rare, decreasing low-level, and decreasing high-level offenders. Chronic low-level offenders, in contrast, displayed fewer systematic differences compared with the two decreasing offender groups and the chronic high-level offenders. The findings supported the contention that varying courses of offending may have plausible causal effects on young adult outcomes beyond the effects of an underlying propensity for crime.
PMCID: PMC1679720  PMID: 15971769
Offending; trajectories; young adulthood; adjustment; longitudinal
12.  Effect of Smoking Scenes in Films on Immediate Smoking 
Background
The National Cancer Institute has concluded that exposure to smoking in movies causes adolescent smoking and there are similar results for young adults.
Purpose
This study investigated whether exposure of young adult smokers to images of smoking in films stimulated smoking behavior.
Methods
100 cigarette smokers aged 18–25 years were randomly assigned to watch a movie montage composed with or without smoking scenes and paraphernalia followed by a10-minute recess. The outcome was whether or not participants smoked during the recess. Data were collected and analyzed in 2008 and 2009.
Results
Smokers who watched the smoking scenes were more likely to smoke during the break (OR3.06, 95% CI=1.01, 9.29). In addition to this acute effect of exposure, smokers who had seen more smoking in movies before the day of the experiment were more likely to smoke during the break (OR 6.73; 1.00–45.25 comparing the top to bottom percentiles of exposure) were more likely to smoke during the break. Level of nicotine dependence (OR 1.71; 1.27–2.32 per point on the FTND scale), “contemplation” (OR 9.07; 1.71–47.99) and “precontemplation” (OR 7.30; 1.39–38.36) stages of change, and impulsivity (OR 1.21; 1.03–1.43), were also associated with smoking during the break. Participants who watched the montage with smoking scenes and those with a higher level of nicotine dependence were also more likely to have smoked within 30 minutes after the study.
Conclusions
There is a direct link between viewing smoking scenes and immediate subsequent smoking behavior. This finding suggests that individuals attempting to limit or quit smoking should be advised to refrain from or reduce their exposure to movies that contain smoking.
doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2009.12.025
PMCID: PMC2854161  PMID: 20307802
13.  Women convicted for violent offenses: Adverse childhood experiences, low level of education and poor mental health 
BMC Psychiatry  2009;9:81.
Background
In past years, the female offender population has grown, leading to an increased interest in the characteristics of female offenders. The aim of this study was to assess the prevalence of female violent offending in a Swiss offender population and to compare possible socio-demographic and offense-related gender differences.
Methods
Descriptive and bivariate logistic regression analyses were performed for a representative sample of N = 203 violent offenders convicted in Zurich, Switzerland.
Results
7.9% (N = 16) of the sample were female. Significant gender differences were found: Female offenders were more likely to be married, less educated, to have suffered from adverse childhood experiences and to be in poor mental health. Female violent offending was less heterogeneous than male violent offending, in fact there were only three types of violent offenses females were convicted for in our sample: One third were convicted of murder, one third for arson and only one woman was convicted of a sex offense.
Conclusions
The results of our study point toward a gender-specific theory of female offending, as well as toward the importance of developing models for explaining female criminal behavior, which need to be implemented in treatment plans and intervention strategies regarding female offenders.
doi:10.1186/1471-244X-9-81
PMCID: PMC2804674  PMID: 20028499
14.  The Effect of Tobacco Control Measures during a Period of Rising Cardiovascular Disease Risk in India: A Mathematical Model of Myocardial Infarction and Stroke 
PLoS Medicine  2013;10(7):e1001480.
In this paper from Basu and colleagues, a simulation of tobacco control and pharmacological interventions to prevent cardiovascular disease mortality in India predicted that Smokefree laws and increased tobacco taxation are likely to be the most effective measures to avert future cardiovascular deaths in India.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Background
We simulated tobacco control and pharmacological strategies for preventing cardiovascular deaths in India, the country that is expected to experience more cardiovascular deaths than any other over the next decade.
Methods and Findings
A microsimulation model was developed to quantify the differential effects of various tobacco control measures and pharmacological therapies on myocardial infarction and stroke deaths stratified by age, gender, and urban/rural status for 2013 to 2022. The model incorporated population-representative data from India on multiple risk factors that affect myocardial infarction and stroke mortality, including hypertension, hyperlipidemia, diabetes, coronary heart disease, and cerebrovascular disease. We also included data from India on cigarette smoking, bidi smoking, chewing tobacco, and secondhand smoke. According to the model's results, smoke-free legislation and tobacco taxation would likely be the most effective strategy among a menu of tobacco control strategies (including, as well, brief cessation advice by health care providers, mass media campaigns, and an advertising ban) for reducing myocardial infarction and stroke deaths over the next decade, while cessation advice would be expected to be the least effective strategy at the population level. In combination, these tobacco control interventions could avert 25% of myocardial infarctions and strokes (95% CI: 17%–34%) if the effects of the interventions are additive. These effects are substantially larger than would be achieved through aspirin, antihypertensive, and statin therapy under most scenarios, because of limited treatment access and adherence; nevertheless, the impacts of tobacco control policies and pharmacological interventions appear to be markedly synergistic, averting up to one-third of deaths from myocardial infarction and stroke among 20- to 79-y-olds over the next 10 y. Pharmacological therapies could also be considerably more potent with further health system improvements.
Conclusions
Smoke-free laws and substantially increased tobacco taxation appear to be markedly potent population measures to avert future cardiovascular deaths in India. Despite the rise in co-morbid cardiovascular disease risk factors like hyperlipidemia and hypertension in low- and middle-income countries, tobacco control is likely to remain a highly effective strategy to reduce cardiovascular deaths.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are conditions that affect the heart and/or the circulation. In coronary heart disease, for example, narrowing of the heart's blood vessels by fatty deposits slows the blood supply to the heart and may eventually cause a heart attack (myocardial infarction). Stroke, by contrast, is a CVD in which the blood supply to the brain is interrupted. CVD has been a major cause of illness and death in high-income countries for many years, but the burden of CVD is now rapidly rising in low- and middle-income countries. Indeed, worldwide, three-quarters of all deaths from heart disease and stroke occur in low- and middle-income countries. Smoking, high blood pressure (hypertension), high blood cholesterol (hyperlipidemia), diabetes, obesity, and physical inactivity all increase an individual's risk of developing CVD. Prevention strategies and treatments for CVD include lifestyle changes (for example, smoking cessation) and taking drugs that lower blood pressure (antihypertensive drugs) or blood cholesterol levels (statins) or thin the blood (aspirin).
Why Was This Study Done?
Because tobacco use is a key risk factor for CVD and for several other noncommunicable diseases, the World Health Organization has developed an international instrument for tobacco control called the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC). Parties to the FCTC (currently 176 countries) agree to implement a set of core tobacco control provisions including legislation to ban tobacco advertising and to increase tobacco taxes. But will tobacco control measures reduce the burden of CVD effectively in low- and middle-income countries as other risk factors for CVD are becoming more common? In this mathematical modeling study, the researchers investigated this question by simulating the effects of tobacco control measures and pharmacological strategies for preventing CVD on CVD deaths in India. Notably, many of the core FCTC provisions remain poorly implemented or unenforced in India even though it became a party to the convention in 2005. Moreover, experts predict that, over the next decade, this middle-income country will contribute more than any other nation to the global increase in CVD deaths.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers developed a microsimulation model (a computer model that operates at the level of individuals) to quantify the likely effects of various tobacco control measures and pharmacological therapies on deaths from myocardial infarction and stroke in India between 2013 and 2022. They incorporated population-representative data from India on risk factors that affect myocardial infarction and stroke mortality and on tobacco use and exposure to secondhand smoke into their model. They then simulated the effects of five tobacco control measures—smoke-free legislation, tobacco taxation, provision of brief cessation advice by health care providers, mass media campaigns, and advertising bans—and increased access to aspirin, antihypertensive drugs, and statins on deaths from myocardial infarction and stroke. Smoke-free legislation and tobacco taxation are likely to be the most effective strategies for reducing myocardial infarction and stroke deaths over the next decade, according to the model, and the effects of these strategies are likely to be substantially larger than those achieved by drug therapies under current health system conditions. If the effects of smoke-free legislation and tobacco taxation are additive, the model predicts that these two measures alone could avert about 9 million deaths, that is, a quarter of the expected deaths from myocardial infarction and stroke in India over the next 10 years, and that a combination of tobacco control policies and pharmacological interventions could avert up to a third of these deaths.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings suggest that the implementation of smoke-free laws and the introduction of increased tobacco taxes in India would yield substantial and rapid health benefits by averting future CVD deaths. The accuracy of these findings is likely to be affected by the many assumptions included in the mathematical model and by the quality of the data fed into it. Importantly, however, these finding suggest that, despite the rise in other CVD risk factors such as hypertension and hyperlipidemia, tobacco control is likely to be a highly effective strategy for the reduction of CVD deaths over the next decade in India and probably in other low- and middle-income countries. Policymakers in these countries should, therefore, work towards fuller and faster implementation of the core FCTC provisions to boost their efforts to reduce deaths from CVD.
Additional Information
Please access these websites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001480.
The American Heart Association provides information on all aspects of cardiovascular disease; its website includes personal stories about heart attacks and stroke
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has information on heart disease and on stroke (in English and Spanish
The UK National Health Service Choices website provides information about cardiovascular disease and stroke
MedlinePlus provides links to other sources of information on heart diseases, vascular diseases, and stroke (in English and Spanish)
The World Health Organization provides information (in several languages) about the dangers of tobacco, about the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, and about noncommunicable diseases; its Global Noncommunicable Disease Network (NCDnet) aims to help low- and middle- income countries reduce illness and death caused by CVD and other noncommunicable diseases
SmokeFree, a website provided by the UK National Health Service, offers advice on quitting smoking and includes personal stories from people who have stopped smoking
Smokefree.gov, supported by the US National Cancer Institute and other US agencies, offers online tools and resources to help people quit smoking
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001480
PMCID: PMC3706364  PMID: 23874160
15.  A prospective cohort study of the changing mental health needs of adolescents in custody 
BMJ Open  2013;3(3):e002358.
Objective
To investigate changes in mental health and other needs, as well as clinical and diagnostic ‘caseness’, in a sample of adolescents over a 6-month period following entry into a Young Offenders Institution in the UK.
Design
Prospective cohort study.
Setting
One Young Offenders Institution between November 2006 and August 2009.
Participants
219 male adolescents aged 15–18 years (M=16.56; SD=0.6) were assessed at baseline (median=4; range 0–26 days following reception into custody) on the Salford Needs Assessment Schedule for Adolescents (SNASA) and Kiddie Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia (K-SADS). Participants were then reassessed at 3-month and 6-month postbaseline to document any change in mental health.
Results
Of the initial baseline sample, 132 were still in the study at 3-month postbaseline and 63 were still available for assessment at 6 months. There were no differences between those who were not available for assessment at the three key stages in terms of demographic and criminological data. Over time there was a general improvement in mental health. While the proportion of participants with a mental health need (SNASA) did not change over time, symptom severity as measured by the SNASA did reduce significantly. When we assessed diagnostic ‘caseness’ using the K-SADS, three young people showed significant mental health deterioration.
Conclusions
In line with previous studies, we found that symptoms in prison generally improved over time. Prison may provide an opportunity for young people previously leading chaotic lifestyles to settle into a stable routine and engage with services; however, it is unclear if these would be maintained either within the prison or on release into the community.
doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2012-002358
PMCID: PMC3612741  PMID: 23474795
Mental Health
16.  It’s Hard to Offend the College: Effects of Sentence Structure on Figurative-Language Processing 
Previous research has given inconsistent evidence about whether familiar metonyms are more difficult to process than literal expressions. In two eye-tracking while reading experiments, we tested the hypothesis that the difficulty associated with processing metonyms would depend on sentence structure. Experiment 1 examined comprehension of familiar place-for-institution metonyms (e.g., college) when they were an argument of the main verb and showed that they are more difficult to process in a figurative context (e.g., offended the college) than in a literal context (e.g., photographed the college). Experiment 2 demonstrated that when they are arguments of the main verb, familiar metonyms are more difficult to process than frequency-and-length-matched nouns that refer to people (e.g., offended the leader), but that this difficulty was reduced when the metonym appeared as part of an adjunct phrase (e.g., offended the honor of the college). The results support the view that figurative-language processing is moderated by sentence structure. When the metonym was an argument of the verb, the results were consistent with the pattern predicted by the indirect-access model of figurative-language comprehension. In contrast, when the metonym was part of an adjunct phrase, the results were consistent with the pattern predicted by the direct-access model.
doi:10.1037/a0031671
PMCID: PMC3714341  PMID: 23421507
metonymy; figurative language; sentence structure; eye movements
17.  Parental attitudes regarding interviews about injuries to their children 
Injury Prevention  2000;6(1):51-55.
Background—Questions about the circumstances of injuries, especially to infants and young children, might be perceived by parents as threatening or intrusive. Some institutional research review committees express concerns that interviews about childhood injuries may be offensive to parents. The perceived value and potential risk of questions about a young child's injury could affect the quality of responses.
Objectives—To assess parents' perceptions of threat and value of interviews about injury to their young children.
Setting—District of Columbia, 1 October 1995 to 30 September 1996.
Methods—Trained research assistants telephoned the parents of children seen in an emergency department or admitted to the hospital after an injury. To be eligible for inclusion the child must have been <3 years of age and a resident of the District of Columbia at the time of the event. After collection of sociodemographic information and circumstances of injury, the respondents were asked if the interview caused them to feel angry, offended or threatened, and if participation in the study was considered worthwhile.
Results—Seventy eight per cent of eligible families were contacted. Among those contacted, 93% completed the interview. Eighty two per cent of respondents were mothers and 11% fathers. Ninety per cent (95% confidence interval (CI) 88.4 to 91.6) of the respondents reported that the interview did not make them feel angry, offended, or threatened. Only 13 (1%; 95% CI 0.5 to 1.5) reported being very angry and 7.1% (95% CI 5.8 to 8.5) reported being a little angry. The majority of participants (61.2%, 95% CI 58.6 to 63.8) felt that participation in the study was definitely worthwhile and only 5.5 % (95% CI 4.3 to 6.7) felt that it was not at all worthwhile. Parents of children with intentional injuries were more likely to report feelings of anger than parents of children with unintentional injuries (24% v 8 %; p=0.02). The per cent of respondents reporting any anger was greater when the interview was conducted within 14 days of the hospital visit compared with later interviews (11% v 7 %; p=0.02).
Conclusions—In similar populations most parents of young, injured children are neither upset nor threatened by interviews that probe for details about how their children become injured. In general, collecting data aimed to prevent injuries is perceived as worthwhile, and parents readily cooperate with providing this information. Investigators and review committees should consider that interviews about infant and young child injuries are of no or minimal risk.
doi:10.1136/ip.6.1.51
PMCID: PMC1730580  PMID: 10728543
18.  High and low contraceptive use amongst young male offenders: a qualitative interview study 
Objectives
There are high rates of fatherhood and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) among young incarcerated men. Here we focus on a sample of men incarcerated in a Scottish Young Offender Institution, analysing their accounts of their contraceptive use. Those who report low or no use of contraception are compared with those who report high use.
Methods
Semi-structured interviews with 40 young male offenders, aged 16–21 years. Participants were purposively sampled using answers from a questionnaire administered to 67 inmates. Data from those men (n=31) reporting either high (n=14) or low/no use (n=17) of contraception are analysed here.
Results
Low users emphasise their desire for pleasure and appear fatalistic about both pregnancy and disease prevention. High users report a strong desire to protect themselves and their ‘manliness’ by using condoms to avoid the risk of STIs and, to a lesser extent, pregnancy. Both sets of men present themselves in a traditionally masculine way, with high users emphasising power, authority and self-control to justify their non-risk-taking contraceptive behaviour.
Conclusions
The masculine narrative regarding self-protection, utilised by the high users, may be an effective method of intervention with potential and actual low users. Conventional masculinity valorises risk-taking but if particular forms of risk avoidance – condom use – can be legitimised as confirming one's masculinity it may be possible to persuade low users to adopt them. The opportunity to work with young men whilst incarcerated should be grasped.
doi:10.1136/jfprhc-2013-100696
PMCID: PMC4173989  PMID: 24736230
condom; sexually transmitted infections; qualitative research; teenagers
19.  Starting to smoke: a qualitative study of the experiences of Australian indigenous youth 
BMC Public Health  2012;12:963.
Background
Adult smoking has its roots in adolescence. If individuals do not initiate smoking during this period it is unlikely they ever will. In high income countries, smoking rates among Indigenous youth are disproportionately high. However, despite a wealth of literature in other populations, there is less evidence on the determinants of smoking initiation among Indigenous youth. The aim of this study was to explore the determinants of smoking among Australian Indigenous young people with a particular emphasis on the social and cultural processes that underlie tobacco use patterns among this group.
Methods
This project was undertaken in northern Australia. We undertook group interviews with 65 participants and individual in-depth interviews with 11 youth aged 13–20 years led by trained youth ‘peer researchers.’ We also used visual methods (photo-elicitation) with individual interviewees to investigate the social context in which young people do or do not smoke. Included in the sample were a smaller number of non-Indigenous youth to explore any significant differences between ethnic groups in determinants of early smoking experiences. The theory of triadic influence, an ecological model of health behaviour, was used as an organising theory for analysis.
Results
Family and peer influences play a central role in smoking uptake among Indigenous youth. Social influences to smoke are similar between Indigenous and non-Indigenous youth but are more pervasive (especially in the family domain) among Indigenous youth. While Indigenous youth report high levels of exposure to smoking role models and smoking socialisation practices among their family and social networks, this study provides some indication of a progressive denormalisation of smoking among some Indigenous youth.
Conclusions
Future initiatives aimed at preventing smoking uptake in this population need to focus on changing social normative beliefs around smoking, both at a population level and within young peoples’ immediate social environment. Such interventions could be effectively delivered in both the school and family environments. Specifically, health practitioners in contact with Indigenous families should be promoting smoke free homes and other anti-smoking socialisation behaviours.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-12-963
PMCID: PMC3545896  PMID: 23140529
Aboriginal; Youth; Smoking; Tobacco; Australia
20.  The Brazil SimSmoke Policy Simulation Model: The Effect of Strong Tobacco Control Policies on Smoking Prevalence and Smoking-Attributable Deaths in a Middle Income Nation 
PLoS Medicine  2012;9(11):e1001336.
David Levy and colleagues use the SimSmoke model to estimate the effect of Brazil's recent stronger tobacco control policies on smoking prevalence and associated premature mortality, and the effect that additional policies may have.
Background
Brazil has reduced its smoking rate by about 50% in the last 20 y. During that time period, strong tobacco control policies were implemented. This paper estimates the effect of these stricter policies on smoking prevalence and associated premature mortality, and the effect that additional policies may have.
Methods and Findings
The model was developed using the SimSmoke tobacco control policy model. Using policy, population, and smoking data for Brazil, the model assesses the effect on premature deaths of cigarette taxes, smoke-free air laws, mass media campaigns, marketing restrictions, packaging requirements, cessation treatment programs, and youth access restrictions. We estimate the effect of past policies relative to a counterfactual of policies kept to 1989 levels, and the effect of stricter future policies. Male and female smoking prevalence in Brazil have fallen by about half since 1989, which represents a 46% (lower and upper bounds: 28%–66%) relative reduction compared to the 2010 prevalence under the counterfactual scenario of policies held to 1989 levels. Almost half of that 46% reduction is explained by price increases, 14% by smoke-free air laws, 14% by marketing restrictions, 8% by health warnings, 6% by mass media campaigns, and 10% by cessation treatment programs. As a result of the past policies, a total of almost 420,000 (260,000–715,000) deaths had been averted by 2010, increasing to almost 7 million (4.5 million–10.3 million) deaths projected by 2050. Comparing future implementation of a set of stricter policies to a scenario with 2010 policies held constant, smoking prevalence by 2050 could be reduced by another 39% (29%–54%), and 1.3 million (0.9 million–2.0 million) out of 9 million future premature deaths could be averted.
Conclusions
Brazil provides one of the outstanding public health success stories in reducing deaths due to smoking, and serves as a model for other low and middle income nations. However, a set of stricter policies could further reduce smoking and save many additional lives.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Tobacco kills up to half its users—more than 5 million smokers die every year from tobacco-related causes. It also kills more than half a million non-smokers annually who have been exposed to second-hand smoke. If current trends continue, annual tobacco-related deaths could increase to more than 8 million by 2030. In response to this global tobacco epidemic, the World Health Organization has developed an international instrument for tobacco control called the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC). Since it came into force in February 2005, 176 countries have become parties to the FCTC. As such, they agree to implement comprehensive bans on tobacco advertizing, promotion, and sponsorship; to ban misleading and deceptive terms on tobacco packaging; to protect people from exposure to cigarette smoke in public spaces and indoor workplaces; to implement tax policies aimed at reducing tobacco consumption; and to combat illicit trade in tobacco products.
Why Was This Study Done?
Brazil has played a pioneering role in providing support for tobacco control measures in low and middle income countries. It introduced its first cigarette-specific tax in 1990 and, in 1996, it placed the first warnings on cigarette packages and introduced smoke-free air laws. Many of these measures have subsequently been strengthened. Over the same period, the prevalence of smoking among adults (the proportion of the population that smokes) has halved in Brazil, falling from 34.8% in 1989 to 18.5% in 2008. But did the introduction of tobacco control policies contribute to this decline, and if so, which were the most effective policies? In this study, the researchers use a computational model called the SimSmoke tobacco control policy model to investigate this question and to examine the possible effect of introducing additional control policies consistent with the FCTC, which Brazil has been a party to since 2006.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers developed Brazil SimSmoke by incorporating policy, population, and smoking data for Brazil into the SimSmoke simulation model; Brazil SimSmoke estimates smoking prevalence and smoking-attributable deaths from 1989 forwards. They then compared smoking prevalences and smoking-attributable deaths estimated by Brazil SimSmoke for 2010 with and without the inclusion of the tobacco control policies that were introduced between 1989 and 2010. The model estimated that the smoking prevalence in Brazil in 2010 was reduced by 46% by the introduction of tobacco control measures. Almost half of this reduction was explained by price increases, 14% by smoke-free laws, 14% by marketing restrictions, 8% by health warnings, 6% by anti-smoking media campaigns, and 10% by cessation treatment programs. Moreover, as a result of past policies, the model estimated that almost 420,000 tobacco-related deaths had been averted by 2010 and that almost 7 million deaths will have been averted by 2050. Finally, using the model to compare the effects of a scenario that includes stricter policies (for example, an increase in tobacco tax) with a scenario that includes the 2010 policies only, indicated that stricter control policies would reduce the estimated smoking prevalence by an extra 39% between 2010 and 2050 and avert about 1.3 million additional premature deaths.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings indicate that the introduction of tobacco control policies has been a critical factor in the rapid decline in smoking prevalence in Brazil over the past 20 years. They also suggest that the introduction of stricter policies that are fully consistent with the FCTC has the potential to reduce the prevalence of smoking further and save many additional lives. Although the reduction in smoking prevalence in Brazil between 1989 and 2010 predicted by the Brazil SimSmoke model is close to the recorded reduction over that period, these findings need to be interpreted with caution because of the many assumptions incorporated in the model. Moreover, the accuracy of the model's predictions depends on the accuracy of the data fed into it, some of which was obtained from other countries and may not accurately reflect the situation in Brazil. Importantly, however, these findings show that, even for a middle income nation, reducing tobacco use is a “winnable battle” that carries huge dividends in terms of reducing illness and death without requiring unlimited resources.
Additional Information
Please access these websites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001336.
The World Health Organization provides information about the dangers of tobacco (in several languages), about the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, and about tobacco control in Brazil
The Framework Convention Alliance provides more information about the FCTC
The Brazilian National Cancer Institute (INCA) provides information on tobacco control policies in Brazil; additional information about tobacco control laws in Brazil is available on the Tobacco Control Laws interactive website, which provides information about tobacco control legislation worldwide
More information on the SimSmoke model of tobacco control policies is available in document or slideshow form
SmokeFree, a website provided by the UK National Health Service, offers advice on quitting smoking and includes personal stories from people who have stopped smoking
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001336
PMCID: PMC3491001  PMID: 23139643
21.  “Efforts to Reprioritise the Agenda” in China: British American Tobacco's Efforts to Influence Public Policy on Secondhand Smoke in China 
PLoS Medicine  2008;5(12):e251.
Background
Each year, 540 million Chinese are exposed to secondhand smoke (SHS), resulting in more than 100,000 deaths. Smoke-free policies have been demonstrated to decrease overall cigarette consumption, encourage smokers to quit, and protect the health of nonsmokers. However, restrictions on smoking in China remain limited and ineffective. Internal tobacco industry documents show that transnational tobacco companies (TTCs) have pursued a multifaceted strategy for undermining the adoption of restrictions on smoking in many countries.
Methods and Findings
To understand company activities in China related to SHS, we analyzed British American Tobacco's (BAT's) internal corporate documents produced in response to litigation against the major cigarette manufacturers to understand company activities in China related to SHS. BAT has carried out an extensive strategy to undermine the health policy agenda on SHS in China by attempting to divert public attention from SHS issues towards liver disease prevention, pushing the so-called “resocialisation of smoking” accommodation principles, and providing “training” for industry, public officials, and the media based on BAT's corporate agenda that SHS is an insignificant contributor to the larger issue of air pollution.
Conclusions
The public health community in China should be aware of the tactics previously used by TTCs, including efforts by the tobacco industry to co-opt prominent Chinese benevolent organizations, when seeking to enact stronger restrictions on smoking in public places.
Monique Muggli and colleagues study British American Tobacco (BAT) internal documents and find that from the mid 1990s BAT pursued a strategy aimed at influencing the public debate on secondhand smoke in China.
Editors' Summary
Background.
Each year, about one million people die in China from tobacco-caused diseases, including cancer, heart disease, and lung disease. Although most of these deaths occur among smokers—300 million people smoke in China, accounting for one-third of the global “consumption” of cigarettes—more than 100,000 deaths from tobacco-related causes occur annually among the 540 million Chinese people who are exposed to secondhand smoke. Tobacco smoke contains 4,000 known chemicals, 69 of which are known or probable carcinogens, and, when it is produced in enclosed spaces, both smokers and nonsmokers are exposed to its harmful effects. The only effective way to reduce tobacco smoke exposure indoors to acceptable levels is to implement 100% smoke-free environments—ventilation, filtration, and the provision of segregated areas for smokers and nonsmokers are insufficient. Importantly, as well as protecting nonsmokers from secondhand smoke, the implementation of smoke-free public places also reduces the number of cigarettes smoked among continuing smokers, increases the likelihood of smokers quitting, and reduces the chances of young people taking up smoking.
Why Was This Study Done?
Article 8 of the World Health Organization's Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC; an international public-health treaty that seeks to reduce tobacco-caused death and disease) calls on countries party to the treaty to protect their citizens from secondhand smoke exposure. China became a party to the FCTC in 2005 but restrictions on smoking in public places in China remain limited and ineffective. Previous analyses of internal tobacco industry documents have revealed that transnational tobacco companies (TTCs) have used a multifaceted approach to undermine the adoption of restrictions on smoking in many countries. TTCs have been shown to influence media coverage of secondhand smoke issues and to promote ineffective ventilation and separate smoking and nonsmoking areas in restaurants, bars, and hotels (so-called “resocalization of smoking” accommodation principles) with the aim of undermining smoke-free legislation. In addition, TTCs have created organizations interested in non-tobacco-related diseases to draw attention away from the public-health implications of secondhand smoke. In this study, the researchers ask whether TTCs have used a similar approach to undermine the adoption of restrictions on smoking in China, one of the most coveted cigarette markets in the world by the major TTCs.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers analyzed internal corporate documents produced by British American Tobacco (BAT; the predominant TTC in China) in response to litigation against major cigarette manufacturers stored in document depositories in Minnesota, USA and Guildford, UK. Among these documents, they found evidence that BAT had attempted to divert attention from secondhand smoke issues toward liver disease prevention by funding the Beijing Liver Foundation (BFL) from its inception in 1997 until at least 2002 (the most recent year that BAT's corporate records are available for public review). The researchers also found evidence that BAT had promoted “resocialization of smoking” accommodation principles as a “route to avoid smoking bans” and pushed ventilation and air filtration in airports and in establishments serving food and drink. Finally, the researchers found evidence that BAT had sought to “present the message that ‘tobacco smoke is just one of the sources of air polution [sic] and a very insignificant one compared with other pollutants'” through presentations given to the Chinese tobacco industry and media seminars aimed at Chinese journalists.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings indicate that, beginning in the mid 1990s and continuing until at least 2002, BAT has followed an intensive, multi-pronged strategy designed to undermine the health policy agenda on secondhand smoke in China. Given their findings, the researchers suggest that BFL and other charitable organizations in China must be wary of accepting tobacco money and that measures must be taken to improve the transparency and accountability of these and other public organizations. To meet FCTC obligations under Article 5.3 (industry interference), policy makers in China, they suggest, must be made aware of how BAT and other TTCs have repeatedly sought to influence health policy in China by focusing attention toward the adoption of ineffective air filtration and ventilation systems in hospitality venues rather than the implementation of 100% smoke-free environments. Finally, Chinese policy makers and the media need to be better informed about BAT's long-standing attempts to communicate misleading messages to them about the health effects of secondhand smoke.
Additional Information.
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.0050251.
The World Health Organization's Regional Office for the Western Pacific provides smoking statistics for China and other countries in the region
The World Health Organization provides information on the health problems associated with secondhand smoke, about its Tobacco Free Initiative (available in several languages), and about the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (also available in several languages)
MedlinePlus provides links to information about the dangers of secondhand smoke (available in English and Spanish)
The UK National Health Service Smokefree Web site provides information about the advantages of giving up smoking, how to give up smoking, and the dangers associated with secondhand smoke
British American Tobacco documents stored in the Minnesota and Guildford Depositories, including those analyzed in this study, can be searched through the British American Tobacco Documents Archive
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.0050251
PMCID: PMC2605899  PMID: 19108603
22.  Study of infection with HIV and related risk factors in young offenders' institution. 
BMJ : British Medical Journal  1993;307(6898):228-231.
OBJECTIVES--To estimate the prevalence of infection with HIV in young offenders in Scotland and to obtain information about related risk factors and previous tests for HIV. DESIGN--Voluntary anonymous study with subjects giving saliva samples for testing for HIV and completing questionnaires about risk factors. SETTING--Polmont Young Offenders' Institution near Falkirk, Scotland. SUBJECTS--421 of 424 available male prisoners in Polmont. The questionnaires of 17 of the prisoners were excluded because of inaccuracies. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES--Prevalence of infection with HIV and related risk behaviour. RESULTS--68 (17%) of prisoners admitted misuse of intravenous drugs, of whom 17 (25%) admitted having injected drugs while in prison. Three subjects admitted having anal intercourse while in prison. Prevalence of misuse of intravenous drugs varied geographically: 28% (33/120) of prisoners from Glasgow compared with 9% (7/81) of those from Edinburgh and Fife. A high level of heterosexual activity was reported, with 36% (142/397) of prisoners claiming to have had six or more female sexual partners in the year before they were imprisoned. Altogether 8% (32/389) of prisoners had previously taken a personal test for HIV: 50% (9/18) of those who had started misusing intravenous drugs before 1989, 18% (9/49) of those who started misuse later, and only 4% (14/322) of those who had not misused intravenous drugs. No saliva sample tested positive for antibodies to HIV, but 96 prisoners requested a confidential personal test for HIV as a result of heightened awareness generated by the study. CONCLUSIONS--Voluntary, anonymous HIV surveys can achieve excellent compliance in prisons, and the interest generated by the study suggests that prisons may be suitable sites for providing education and drug rehabilitation for a young male population at high risk of future infection with HIV.
PMCID: PMC1678167  PMID: 8369682
23.  Burden of Total and Cause-Specific Mortality Related to Tobacco Smoking among Adults Aged ≥45 Years in Asia: A Pooled Analysis of 21 Cohorts 
PLoS Medicine  2014;11(4):e1001631.
Wei Zheng and colleagues quantify the burden of tobacco-smoking-related deaths for adults in Asia.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Background
Tobacco smoking is a major risk factor for many diseases. We sought to quantify the burden of tobacco-smoking-related deaths in Asia, in parts of which men's smoking prevalence is among the world's highest.
Methods and Findings
We performed pooled analyses of data from 1,049,929 participants in 21 cohorts in Asia to quantify the risks of total and cause-specific mortality associated with tobacco smoking using adjusted hazard ratios and their 95% confidence intervals. We then estimated smoking-related deaths among adults aged ≥45 y in 2004 in Bangladesh, India, mainland China, Japan, Republic of Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan—accounting for ∼71% of Asia's total population. An approximately 1.44-fold (95% CI = 1.37–1.51) and 1.48-fold (1.38–1.58) elevated risk of death from any cause was found in male and female ever-smokers, respectively. In 2004, active tobacco smoking accounted for approximately 15.8% (95% CI = 14.3%–17.2%) and 3.3% (2.6%–4.0%) of deaths, respectively, in men and women aged ≥45 y in the seven countries/regions combined, with a total number of estimated deaths of ∼1,575,500 (95% CI = 1,398,000–1,744,700). Among men, approximately 11.4%, 30.5%, and 19.8% of deaths due to cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and respiratory diseases, respectively, were attributable to tobacco smoking. Corresponding proportions for East Asian women were 3.7%, 4.6%, and 1.7%, respectively. The strongest association with tobacco smoking was found for lung cancer: a 3- to 4-fold elevated risk, accounting for 60.5% and 16.7% of lung cancer deaths, respectively, in Asian men and East Asian women aged ≥45 y.
Conclusions
Tobacco smoking is associated with a substantially elevated risk of mortality, accounting for approximately 2 million deaths in adults aged ≥45 y throughout Asia in 2004. It is likely that smoking-related deaths in Asia will continue to rise over the next few decades if no effective smoking control programs are implemented.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Every year, more than 5 million smokers die from tobacco-related diseases. Tobacco smoking is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease (conditions that affect the heart and the circulation), respiratory disease (conditions that affect breathing), lung cancer, and several other types of cancer. All told, tobacco smoking kills up to half its users. The ongoing global “epidemic” of tobacco smoking and tobacco-related diseases initially affected people living in the US and other Western countries, where the prevalence of smoking (the proportion of the population that smokes) in men began to rise in the early 1900s, peaking in the 1960s. A similar epidemic occurred in women about 40 years later. Smoking-related deaths began to increase in the second half of the 20th century, and by the 1990s, tobacco smoking accounted for a third of all deaths and about half of cancer deaths among men in the US and other Western countries. More recently, increased awareness of the risks of smoking and the introduction of various tobacco control measures has led to a steady decline in tobacco use and in smoking-related diseases in many developed countries.
Why Was This Study Done?
Unfortunately, less well-developed tobacco control programs, inadequate public awareness of smoking risks, and tobacco company marketing have recently led to sharp increases in the prevalence of smoking in many low- and middle-income countries, particularly in Asia. More than 50% of men in many Asian countries are now smokers, about twice the prevalence in many Western countries, and more women in some Asian countries are smoking than previously. More than half of the world's billion smokers now live in Asia. However, little is known about the burden of tobacco-related mortality (deaths) in this region. In this study, the researchers quantify the risk of total and cause-specific mortality associated with tobacco use among adults aged 45 years or older by undertaking a pooled statistical analysis of data collected from 21 Asian cohorts (groups) about their smoking history and health.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
For their study, the researchers used data from more than 1 million participants enrolled in studies undertaken in Bangladesh, India, mainland China, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan (which together account for 71% of Asia's total population). Smoking prevalences among male and female participants were 65.1% and 7.1%, respectively. Compared with never-smokers, ever-smokers had a higher risk of death from any cause in pooled analyses of all the cohorts (adjusted hazard ratios [HRs] of 1.44 and 1.48 for men and women, respectively; an adjusted HR indicates how often an event occurs in one group compared to another group after adjustment for other characteristics that affect an individual's risk of the event). Compared with never smoking, ever smoking was associated with a higher risk of death due to cardiovascular disease, cancer (particularly lung cancer), and respiratory disease among Asian men and among East Asian women. Moreover, the researchers estimate that, in the countries included in this study, tobacco smoking accounted for 15.8% of all deaths among men and 3.3% of deaths among women in 2004—a total of about 1.5 million deaths, which scales up to 2 million deaths for the population of the whole of Asia. Notably, in 2004, tobacco smoking accounted for 60.5% of lung-cancer deaths among Asian men and 16.7% of lung-cancer deaths among East Asian women.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings provide strong evidence that tobacco smoking is associated with a substantially raised risk of death among adults aged 45 years or older throughout Asia. The association between smoking and mortality risk in Asia reported here is weaker than that previously reported for Western countries, possibly because widespread tobacco smoking started several decades later in most Asian countries than in Europe and North America and the deleterious effects of smoking take some years to become evident. The researchers note that certain limitations of their analysis are likely to affect the accuracy of its findings. For example, because no data were available to estimate the impact of secondhand smoke, the estimate of deaths attributable to smoking is likely to be an underestimate. However, the finding that nearly 45% of the global deaths from active tobacco smoking occur in Asia highlights the urgent need to implement comprehensive tobacco control programs in Asia to reduce the burden of tobacco-related disease.
Additional Information
Please access these websites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001631.
The World Health Organization provides information about the dangers of tobacco (in several languages) and about the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, an international instrument for tobacco control that came into force in February 2005 and requires parties to implement a set of core tobacco control provisions including legislation to ban tobacco advertising and to increase tobacco taxes; its 2013 report on the global tobacco epidemic is available
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides detailed information about all aspects of smoking and tobacco use
The UK National Health Services Choices website provides information about the health risks associated with smoking
MedlinePlus has links to further information about the dangers of smoking (in English and Spanish)
SmokeFree, a website provided by the UK National Health Service, offers advice on quitting smoking and includes personal stories from people who have stopped smoking
Smokefree.gov, from the US National Cancer Institute, offers online tools and resources to help people quit smoking
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001631
PMCID: PMC3995657  PMID: 24756146
24.  Prevalence of HIV and hepatitis C virus infections among inmates of Ontario remand facilities 
Background
Each year more than 56 000 adult and young offenders are admitted to Ontario's remand facilities (jails, detention centres and youth centres). The prevalence of HIV infection in Ontario remand facilities was last measured over a decade ago, and no research on the prevalence of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection has been conducted in such facilities. We sought to determine the prevalence of HIV infection, HCV infection and HIV–HCV coinfection among inmates in Ontario's remand facilities.
Methods
A voluntary and anonymous cross-sectional prevalence study of HIV and HCV infections was conducted among people admitted to 13 selected remand facilities across Ontario between Feb. 1, 2003, and June 20, 2004. Data collection included a saliva specimen for HIV and HCV antibody screening and an interviewer-administered survey. Prevalence rates and 95% confidence intervals were calculated and examined according to demographic characteristics, region of incarceration and self-reported history of injection drug use.
Results
In total, 1877 participants provided both a saliva specimen and survey information. Among the adult participants, the prevalence of HIV infection was 2.1% among men and 1.8% among women. Adult offenders most likely to have HIV infection were older offenders (≥ 30 years) and injection drug users. The prevalence of HCV infection was 15.9% among men, 30.2% among women and 54.7% among injection drug users. Adult offenders most likely to have HCV infection were women, older offenders (≥ 30 years) and injection drug users. The prevalence of HCV–HIV coinfection was 1.2% among men and 1.5% among women. It was highest among older inmates and injection drug users. Among the young offenders, none was HIV positive and 1 (0.4%) was HCV positive. On the basis of the study results, we estimated that 1079 HIV-positive adults and 9208 HCV-positive adults were admitted to remand facilities in Ontario from Apr. 1, 2003, to Mar. 31, 2004.
Interpretation
Adult offenders entering Ontario remand facilities have a considerably higher prevalence of HIV and HCV infections than the general population.
doi:10.1503/cmaj.060416
PMCID: PMC1930192  PMID: 17664449
25.  Treatment needs of prisoners with psychiatric disorders. 
BMJ : British Medical Journal  1991;303(6798):338-341.
OBJECTIVE--To describe the prevalence of psychiatric disorder and the treatment needs of sentenced prisoners in England and Wales. DESIGN--Population survey based on a 5% sample of men serving prison sentences. SETTING--Sixteen prisons for adult males and nine institutions for male young offenders representative of all prisons in prison type, security levels, and length of sentences. SUBJECTS--406 young offenders and 1478 adult men, 404 and 1365 of whom agreed to be interviewed. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES--History of psychiatric disorder, clinical diagnosis of psychiatrist, and required treatment. RESULTS--652 (37%) men had psychiatric disorders diagnosed, of whom 15 (0.8%) had organic disorders, 34 (2%) psychosis, 105 (6%) neurosis, 177 (10%) personality disorder, and 407 (23%) substance misuse. 52 (3%) were judged to require transfer to hospital for psychiatric treatment, 96 (5%) required treatment in a therapeutic community setting, and a further 176 (10%) required further psychiatric assessment or treatment within prison. CONCLUSIONS--By extrapolation the sentenced prison population includes over 700 men with psychosis, and around 1100 who would warrant transfer to hospital for psychiatric treatment. Provision of secure treatment facilities, particularly long term medium secure units, needs to be improved. Services for people with personality, sexual, and substance misuse disorders should be developed in both prisons and the health service.
PMCID: PMC1670792  PMID: 1912775

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