Introduction: This study tests hypotheses concerning ethnic disparities in daily cigarette smoking rate, nicotine dependence, cessation motivation, and knowledge and past use of cessation methods (e.g., counseling) and products (e.g., nicotine patch) in a multi-ethnic sample of smokers in Hawaii. Previous research has revealed significant differences in smoking prevalence among Native Hawaiians, Filipinos, Japanese, and Caucasians in Hawaii. However, no study has examined differences in dependence and cessation-related knowledge and practices among smokers representing these ethnic groups.

Methods: Participants were recruited through newspaper advertisement as part of a larger smoking cessation intervention study. Participants (N=919; M age=45.6, SD=12.7; 48% female) eligible to participate provided self-report data through mail and telephone. Subjects included 271 self-identified Native Hawaiians, 63 Filipinos, 316 Caucasians, 145 “Asians” (e.g., Japanese, Chinese), and 124 “Other” (e.g., Hispanic, African-American).

Results: Pair-wise comparisons of means, controlling for age, gender, income, education, and marital status, indicated that Native Hawaiian smokers reported statistically significantly higher daily smoking rates and higher levels of nicotine dependence compared to Asians. Native Hawaiian smokers reported significantly lower motivation to quit smoking as compared to Caucasians. Further, Filipino, and Native Hawaiian smokers reported lesser knowledge of cessation methods and products, and less frequent use of these methods and products compared to Caucasians.

Conclusions: The results suggest that Native Hawaiian and Filipino smokers could be under-served with regard to receiving cessation-related advice, and may lack adequate access to smoking cessation products and services. In addition, cessation interventions tailored for Native Hawaiian smokers could benefit from a motivational enhancement component.

Citation Information: Cancer Prev Res 2011;4(10 Suppl):B37.