PATIENTS and staff at hospitals across south Warwickshire will have to stub it out from the start of next year.
A Smoke Free Trust policy has been approved by South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust (SWFT) which will ban smoking at all trust sites from January 1.
The policy supports the Trust’s and Warwickshire Public Health’s ambition to improve the health and well-being of people across the county.
A number of steps will be taken to achieve this with some of the most noticeable being new signs informing people of the changes and the removal of smoking shelters.
Up to the ban in January, the Smoke Free Sites project group will continue to raise awareness, provide training for staff, and point patients, visitors and staff who want to quit towards Warwickshire Stop Smoking services.
Trust chief executive Glen Burley said: “In a time when there are increasing demands on NHS resources it makes no sense that we are treating people from the damaging health effects of smoking whilst on the same sites people are lighting up cigarettes.
“As one of the largest employers in the Warwickshire we have to set an example to everyone that we will do everything we can to encourage staff, patients and visitors to quit smoking.”
As an employer the Trust has a duty of care under the Health and Safety at Work Act to protect employees and others from the effects of smoking.
There are stopping smoking services available in the outpatients pharmacy at Warwick Hospital, and in locations throughout Warwickshire. Visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/smokefree or call 0800 0852917 for further information.