BACKGROUND: The present qualitative study assessed the need, acceptability and appropriateness for implementing effective and culturally appropriate smoking prevention programs for adolescents in schools in Indonesia.
METHODS: Snowball sampling was used to recruit participants. The study sample comprised a mixture of staff in the education department, junior high school teachers and individuals who had taught junior high school students in Aceh Province, Indonesia. Data were collected through one hour in-depth face to face or telephone interviews and analyzed using a descriptive content analysis procedure.
RESULTS: School teachers and policy makers in education firmly supported the implementation of a school-based smoking prevention program in Aceh. An appropriate intervention for smoking prevention program in schools in Aceh should involve both health and Islamic based approaches, and be provided by teachers and external providers. Potential barriers to the program included smoker teachers and parents, time constraints of students and/or teachers, lack of teachers' ability, increase in students' load, the availability of tobacco advertising and sales, and lack of tobacco regulation and support from community and related departments. To increase program effectiveness, involvement of and coordination with other relevant parties are needed.
CONCLUSIONS: The important stakeholders in Indonesian childhood education agreed that school-based smoking prevention program would be appropriate for junior high school students. An appropriate intervention for smoking prevention program for adolescents in schools in Indonesia should be appropriate to participants' background and involve all relevant parties.