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Lincolnshire trust to ban smoking in alignment with NICE guidance

An NHS Trust is set to become a completely smoke free organisation from the end of June.

Patients and visitor will no longer be able to smoke cigarettes or other tobacco products at any Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (LPFT) site.

The move, which is being led by consultant nurse Paul Barrett, comes as the trust aims to tackle smoking culture in mental health services across the country.

He said: “A smoke free environment will help to create a healthier place for patients, staff and all visitors to the Trust.

“We want our patients and staff to enjoy the best possible health and there is lots of support available to help them through the change - whether they wish to stop smoking for good or for the duration of their stay with us.”

Research has shown that people with mental health problems are more likely to smoke, and more heavily than others, resulting in poorer physical health and lower life expectancy.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) advises that all hospital site, including mental health hospitals, should be smoke free.

Patients admitted to inpatient wards will be supported to not smoke during their stay and some staff are currently enrolled in bespoke smoking cessation training.

However, e-cigarettes will be permitted in some outdoor areas.

Ian Jerams, trust director of operations, said: “We recognise that preventing smoking on our premises will be a challenge for both patients and staff, that's why we will be doing all we can to support people in their attempts to quit,” he said.

“Currently our inpatient nurses devote a lot of their time to escorting patients to designated smoking areas and we'd like this time to be spent on providing therapeutic activities.

“Help will include nicotine replacement therapy and behavioural support, and basic advice and signposting to other support will also be offered.

“In addition to this, a group of staff who work with inpatients have been trained to deliver more intensive smoking cessation support.”

The ban on smoking will take effect from 28 June.