Background: Smoking is an important modifiable risk factor of morbidities and mortality. Although healthcare professionals play an important role in smoking cessation, their adoption of such practices is relatively low because of inadequate training. To address this issue, we incorporated a service-learning model to operate the Youth Quitline. Undergraduate nursing students were trained and received supervision while delivering smoking cessation counseling through the Youth Quitline as their clinical placement. Objectives: We evaluated the effectiveness of the placement by assessing students' knowledge, attitudes and practices regarding smoking cessation and tobacco control. Design: One-group pretest-posttest design. Setting: Youth Quitline. Participants: A total of 61 third-year students in a mental health nursing program. Methods: Students were required to complete 80 h at the Youth Quitline. The 80 h were divided into 20 sessions; students used four sessions to approach and recruit youth smokers in the community, then provided them with telephone counseling for the rest of the time. Prior to the placement, students attended a 2-day workshop. The outcomes were changes in students' knowledge, attitudes and practices regarding smoking cessation and tobacco control 3 months after the placement compared with baseline. Results: From January–June 2021, students conducted 105 outreach activities to identify 3142 smokers in the community, and provided telephone counseling for 336 smokers via Youth Quitline. Compared with baseline, significant improvements were observed in students' knowledge, attitudes and practices regarding smoking cessation and tobacco control at 3-month follow-up. Conclusions: The clinical placement improved students' knowledge, attitudes and practices regarding smoking cessation and tobacco control, enhancing their competency in providing support to assist smokers to quit in their future practice. Incorporating the service-learning model in existing community-based services can provide additional venues for nursing students to practice. This is particularly important because many venues have restricted access during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Community health nursing
- Nursing education
- Service-learning implementation
- Smoking cessation
ASJC Scopus subject areas