National No Smoking Day - Wednesday 14th March

Did you know? Quitting smoking is the best thing any smoker can do for their health

Wednesday 14th March is National No Smoking Day and here at Humber NHS Foundation Trust we are separating fact from fiction in our ‘Myth Busters’ feature. Click on the link to read the truth behind some of the most misunderstood smoking topics…

Smoking Myth Buster


Trust to go smoke-free across all services on 1 October 2018

Smoking is to be banned on all Trust sites from October 2018 as clinical leaders move to comply with public health guidance (NICE PH48 – Smoke Free Premises).

Smoking is already prohibited at the Humber Centre, the Trust’s specialist forensic service, but the smoke-free status is yet to be introduced across adult and older peoples inpatient wards or learning disability services.

Patients, their carers and relatives will be asked to abstain from smoking on Trust premises. Inpatients will be supported with choices to aid quitting or abstinence while they receive inpatient care.

Explaining Smoke Free, clinical leaders cite the following advice from the National Centre for Smoking Cessation and Training (NCSCT):

“It is now nationally mandated that mental health settings (and all general health care settings) become totally smoke-free and that smoking is banned from hospital/healthcare buildings and grounds.”

Permitting smoking on Trust sites is also not thought to be compatible with the NHS’s duty to improve health and wellbeing.

The welfare of patients, as well as their carers, relatives and Trust staff, is a key concern.

According to the NCSCT:

  • People with mental health or substance misuse problems buy approximately 42% of the tobacco sold in the UK;
  • High rates of smoking are recorded amongst people with a serious mental illness, identifying that they tend to smoke more and be more dependent, which worsens the health inequalities they suffer. These include their tendency to experience physical illnesses more frequently, and in some cases more severely, and their considerably shorter life expectancy;
  • People who smoke have more severe mental health symptoms, require higher doses of psychotropic medication and spend more time in hospital compared to people with a mental illness who do not smoke;
  • People with a serious mental illness spend more of their disposable income on cigarettes and prioritise them over food and leisure activities. Smokers are more likely to report having suicidal thoughts and have higher rates of suicide;
  • Although stopping smoking will have the greatest impact on their health, many people with mental health needs lack confidence in their ability to quit and historically have not routinely been offered specialist help to do so;
  • Mental health inpatient and community staff have a critical window of opportunity to identify people who smoke, advise on the most effective way of stopping smoking and either provide, or refer people for, specialist support.

The NCSCT states “evaluations of the implementation of smoking bans in mental health settings report no increase in the frequency of aggression, the use of seclusion, discharge against medical advice, or the use of required medication”.

Clinical leaders are planning to provide further details about the Trust’s smoke-free project in the Midday Mail and Global emails, and at engagement sessions scheduled to be held in the New Year. A specific area of the staff intranet will be dedicated to smoke-free resources and the latest developments.

Smoke-free video

The following video, made by and reproduced here with the kind permission of Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust, reflects our Trust’s approach to smoke-free: