Tobacco smoking among people living with HIV in Uganda: understanding the problem to inform effective interventions

With effective HIV treatment, people living with HIV (PLWH) can have a near-normal life expectancy. However, many PLWH smoke with the smoking prevalence among PLWH being much higher than in the general population. PLWH who smoke are twice as likely to die prematurely as non-smoking PLWH even when receiving effective HIV treatment. Unfortunately, smoking cessation interventions that are effective in general population smokers are not effective in helping PLWH who smoke to quit. There is a pressing need to understand PLWH’s smoking behaviour including its determinants, and on this basis, develop smoking cessation interventions that are tailored to their needs.

The proposed study will focus on collecting and analysing information on PLWH’s smoking behaviour and its determinants in Uganda. This information will be subsequently used to design a tailored smoking cessation intervention and to apply for further research funding to evaluate its effectiveness on helping PLWH who smoke to quit.

The specific objectives are:

  • To determine the prevalence of smoking among PLWH in Uganda
  • To assess the risk factors associated with smoking among PLWH
  • To assess knowledge, attitudes and practices regarding smoking 
  • To explore facilitators and barriers of quitting smoking among PLWH 
  • To assemble a cohort of PLWH who smoke who have consented to further contact for the purposes of research.


Funder: Wellcome Trust / Centre for Future Health at the University of York
Start Date December 2018
End Date September 2019


Internal Staff

External Partners

Public Health and Society Research in the Department of Health Sciences