Patients, visitors and staff on Solent NHS trust sites will no longer be able to smoke on site as of this Saturday 1 October 2016.
Solent NHS Trust, provider of community and specialist mental health services in Portsmouth, Southampton and other parts of Hampshire will launch its Smokefree initiative during October and will be providing extra support to staff and patients to help them quit tobacco products.
Although smoking is already prohibited on NHS sites, discretion has been exercised allowing limited smoking in some designated areas. From Saturday, the Trust will enforce a ban on smoking on its sites.
“Patients admitted on our wards, for example, have previously been permitted to smoke in some outdoor areas. We have now taken a decision that we will, instead, offer people support to quit smoking altogether rather than encourage unhealthy lifestyle choices,” said Andrew Smith, manager of the Trust’s Stop Smoking Services.
“We know that poor health outcomes for people with mental health conditions are as a result of higher smoking prevalence in this group. This is a decision we have taken deliberately to help all our patients and staff have healthier lives – and protect everyone else from the harmful effects of second hand tobacco smoke,” added Andrew.
Over the last few months, the Trust has been engaging with services users and staff on the plans. Notices have been put up across most of the sites, approximately 120 around the county, informing visitors of the pending changes.
To make the transition easier, the Trust is offering intensive support for smokers to quit, including providing rapid access to Nicotine Replacement Therapy.
Whilst in many sites the ban will come in on the 1 October some of our specialist mental health sites will be working through a transition period which will see them Smokefree by the end of the year. Ends
Notes for Editors:
Solent NHS Trust was created on 1 April 2011 and specialises in providing high quality community and mental health services. We currently operate out of more than 120 sites across Southampton, Portsmouth and Hampshire.
The ban on smoking follows NICE guidelines directing all NHS Trusts to be smokefree by 2018.If we don’t go smokefree now we will have to do it in the future.
For more information please contact Elton Dzikiti, Public Relations Manager, Solent NHS Trust on 023 8060 8934 or email firstname.lastname@example.org