Issue addressed: The prevalence of smoking among the adult Aboriginal population is almost double that of the non-Aboriginal population. Research shows smoking cessation brief interventions have a positive impact on quit attempts. However, examples of statewide, Aboriginal-led initiatives that ensure health service delivery of brief intervention to all Aboriginal clients are limited.
Methods: Guidance from an Aboriginal chief investigator and key health stakeholders supported the development of the NSW SmokeCheck Program. One component of the program was the establishment of a state-wide network of Aboriginal Health Workers (AHWs) and other health professional participants. Another was a culturally specific training program to strengthen the knowledge, skills, and confidence of participants to provide an evidence-based brief smoking-cessation intervention to Aboriginal clients. The brief intervention was based on the transtheoretical model of behaviour change, adapted for use in Aboriginal communities.
Results: SmokeCheck training reached 35.5% of the total NSW AHW workforce over a 15-month period. More than 90% of participants surveyed indicated satisfaction with the curriculum content, workshop structure and training delivery, agreeing that they found it relevant, easy to understand and applicable to practice.
Conclusions: An evidence-based approach to designing and delivering an Aboriginal-specific health promotion intervention appears to have facilitated the development of a state-wide network of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal health professionals and strengthened their capacity to deliver a brief smoking cessation intervention with Aboriginal clients.