"Smoking in hospital grounds"

About: Wishaw General Hospital / Maternity care

(as a service user),

I am currently in wishaw general. My wife has had a baby at the maternity unit and they were excellent. But the whole experience is let down by the people outside the hospital flagrantly ignoring the smoking ban in hospital grounds. They are sitting on benches smoking while the warning message plays behind them every 2 minutes and nobody is policing it or challenging it. What is the hospital plan for enforcing the ban? It is disgusting and not the image you would want a health facility to portray notwithstanding the fact that it runs contrary to NHS Scotland policy.

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Response from Rick Edwards, Patient Information & Experience Manager, Patient Affairs, NHS Lanarkshire

picture of Rick Edwards

Dear The Winchester,

Congratulations on the birth of your baby! I’ll be delighted to pass on your feedback to the staff in the Maternity Unit.

You're quite right; the NHS Lanarkshire Board launched a revised No-Smoking Policy in August 2014 in line with the Scottish Government’s Tobacco Control Strategy for Scotland which tasked NHS Health Boards to become completely smoke free on hospital grounds by March 2015.

This does however remain a challenge for us. All staff are responsible for communicating this message to people smoking in the hospital grounds, but public awareness also has a part to play. We recognise this change in behaviour will take time to feed through to all patients and the wider public, but we believe that with time and our continued efforts we will be able to achieve this.

We now:

• Have a system to ensure that all patients that smoke have their smoking status assessed on admission and managed appropriately either for temporary abstinence or total cessation.

• Offer smoking cessation support through the NHS Lanarkshire Stop Smoking Service which offers advice and support in conjunction with free nicotine replacement therapy and varenicline (medication used for smoking cessation) from trained nurse advisors.

• Provide brief intervention training for staff, providing them with the basic knowledge and skills necessary to deliver opportunistic advice to smokers and how to refer smokers to the smoking cessation support services.

• Have prominent signage and audio messages.

I hope that this information is helpful to you and demonstrates our commitment to smoke free hospital grounds.

If you or someone you know would like support to give up smoking, NHS Lanarkshire Stop Smoking Service is free, friendly and has helped over 17,000 people quit during 2011-2014.

For more information call 0300 303 0242 (Mon-Fri 9am to 5pm) or text: ‘Advice’ to 81066 you can also visit www.nhslanarkshire.org.uk or www.canstopsmoking.com call Smokeline on 0800 84 84 84 (8am-10pm seven days a week) or visit any Lanarkshire pharmacy.

Kind regards

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Response from Wendy Drysdale, Senior Midwife, Maternity Services, NHS Lanarkshire

picture of Wendy Drysdale

Dear, The Winchester,

Thank you for giving us feedback that the staff in the maternity were excellent, it is always good to hear this and very motivational to our staff and I will directly feedback this to them and I sincerely hope that the information that Rick has provided to you was helpful.



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