One of the region's biggest hospitals serving the Yorkshire Dales is stubbing out smoking from today.
Airedale stubs out smoking.
Sue Wilson, smoking cessation advisor; Dr Richard Pope,
medical director; Pat Smith, occupational health advisor
Not only is lighting up to be stopped in the Hospital buildings - by patients as well as visitors - but neither will it be allowed in the entrances, gardens or indeed in any part of the grounds; and to get the message home new signs are in place and all ashtrays outside the buildings have been removed.
Welcoming the move, Adam Cairns, Airedale's Chief Executive said: "The fact we are now a completely Smoke Free site is a major step forward.
"Second hand smoke is a serious health and safety issue for everyone and I am delighted that we can now offer the patients and public who visit us an even safer, fresher environment."
Special arrangements have been made to make the transition easier for smokers. Patients who smoke will be offered help and support from a Smoking Cessation advisor when they come into hospital and given advice on how to quit or how they can manage their smoking during their stay.
Sue Wilson, the Hospital's 'Stop Smoking Specialist' says: "Patients who smoke should not be worried about their stay in hospital. They can get advice from their GP or local stop smoking service before they come in or once they are here staff will be available to explain the options and support available."
No longer will staff working at Airedale be able to nip out for a quick ciggie either, as the ban is also set to affect them.
Pat Smith is the Hospital's Occupational Health Advisor; she says that support is available to those employees who need it: "We have made sure our staff have been prepared for this day and we have had a significant number of staff smokers coming and asking for help and wanting to quit.
"There is a life after cigarettes and our latest group of successful quitters are a testimony to that."
- As part of 'National No Smoking Day', Hambleton and Richmondshire's Primary Care Trust has organised two stop smoking events. They are being held in the Town Hall in Northallerton and in Richmond's Coop Supermarket, between 10am and 4pm. There to help and advise will be health professionals with information, advice and support for anyone interested in stopping smoking themselves or in supporting their friends and family.