"Smoking at Durham university hospital"

About: University Hospital Of North Durham

I had an appointment at this hospital on the 24th January 2014 and was disgusted that i had to walk past many people smoking right outside the main entrance door, i even had to push my way past them as they were crowding the door as it was raining, after attending my appointment i had to wait for my friend to collect me for the main entrance and had to come back inside the hospital as there were still loads of smokers standing right next to the door and the smell was horrible. Many people complained about the smell and not one member of staff approached these smokers to ask them to leave or put out the cigarettes. This needs to be sorted ASAP as it is unfair to all other patients, visitors and staff who don't want to breathe in secondary smoke.

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Response from University Hospital Of North Durham

I am very sorry to hear of the concerns you have raised. We are committed to making our hospital sites truly smoke free and have launched some smoke free initiatives including lamp post banners as well as floor markings and window signage. The aim of these is to reiterate the smoke free message. The Trust Smokefree policy asks all staff to take responsibility for reminding individuals when they are in breach of the policy. Support mechanisms are in place to help staff do this effectively. Training is in place to reinforce their role and support them in challenging individuals smoking on site. We recognise that there is still a way to go but hopefully through persistence we can bring about this important change. Please contact us if you wish to discuss these issues further. Thank you for bringing this to our attention and accept our unreserved apologies for your poor experience. Patient Experience Team 0800 783 5774 or email us at patient.experience@cddft.nhs.uk

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