Wednesday 14 March 2018 is National No Smoking Day and with all NHS buildings going Smoke Free by the end of the month, this is a good opportunity to make use of all the help on offer to quit for good. Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust says that in order to provide a cleaner, safer environment that promotes good health and reduces harm from exposure to secondhand smoke, all local hospitals in North Tyneside and Northumberland will be completely smokefree from 2018. This means that smoking will not be permitted in buildings, grounds or vehicles and all smoking areas will be removed.
Northumbria Healthcare’s website has these FAQs and answers:
Why is Northumbria Healthcare going smokefree?
Smoking is the leading cause of premature death in the UK. Exposure to secondhand smoke also causes disease and premature death among non-smokers and even brief exposure can cause immediate harm. As an NHS organisation, we have a duty to protect and care for both the health and wellbeing of our staff and patients who are particularly vulnerable to the harmful effects of tobacco smoke. Going smokefree reflects our commitment and responsibility for improving health and wellbeing.
Why are smoking shelters being removed?
Having designated smoking areas, including smoking shelters on our sites, implies that we actively support smoking. People who smoke within the smokefree boundaries will be asked to extinguish their cigarette or move outside of the smokefree boundaries.
How will staff support patients who smoke?
We know that lots of smokers want support to stop and that refraining from smoking can be very difficult. Smokers are four times more likely to stop smoking with NHS support and the use of nicotine replacement. Patients who are admitted to one of our hospitals will be offered medication/nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) in the form of patches and inhalator, as well as a referral for ongoing support. We will also provide advice on how and where to access services and support to stop smoking for those attending as
What are e-cigarettes?
E-cigarettes are devices that deliver nicotine via inhaled vapour. They do not contain tobacco, so the user is not exposed to poisonous gases that are in tobacco smoke and are reported to be up to 95% less harmful than cigarettes. E-cigarettes do not expose others to the harmful effects associated with second hand smoke. The trust allows the use of e-cigarettes in the grounds but not inside of buildings. These devices work well on their own or can be used alongside NRT. Having support from a trained stop smoking adviser alongside the use of NRT and/or e-cigarettes greatly increases your chances of success in quitting.
If you need help quitting then call the Northumberland Stop Smoking Service: 01670 813 135 or the NHS National Smoking Helpline: 0300 123 1044.