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Guy's and St Thomas' to go smoke-free on 19 June

Posted on Thursday 29th January 2015
Mike Salmon with his carbon monoxide monitor

Mike Salmon

Patients and visitors will no longer be permitted to smoke anywhere on Guy’s and St Thomas’ hospital and community premises from Friday 19 June 2015. On 1 January 2014, the Trust banned its staff from smoking on its premises.

Chief Executive Ron Kerr, says:"We want patients, staff and people visiting our hospitals or community sites to know that we care about their health and that we are doing everything we can to make Guy’s and St Thomas’ a healthy environment for everyone.

"While we know that giving up smoking can be a real challenge, there is overwhelming evidence that doing so will help our patients’ chances of successful treatment and a swifter recovery. 

"People who get NHS support to stop smoking are four times more likely to give up smoking for good. So we will be encouraging anyone who uses our services or lives locally to use the NHS stop smoking service to get the help they need to kick the smoking habit.“

Mike Salmon, 57, from Rotherhithe, gave up a 20-a-day smoking habit in June 2014. He says: “I started smoking when I was 20. In those days lots of people smoked, even at work. I tried to give up smoking a couple of times but I just couldn’t quit.

 “In September 2013, I had a pain in my chest and went to A&E where I had an X-ray and was found to have pulled a muscle. My GP saw the results and was concerned about my lungs so referred me to the chest clinic at St Thomas’ Hospital.

 “Thankfully the consultant ruled out cancer but he said I had bronchial problems which would affect my breathing if I didn’t stop smoking.

 “I haven’t smoked a cigarette since. What’s different this time is the support of the stop smoking service. They have kept me focused on what I’m trying to do.”

Guy’s and St Thomas’ decision to go smoke-free is in line with National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidance issued in 2013, which recommends that all hospital sites should be smoke-free. It will also apply to e-cigarettes.

More than 460,000 hospital admissions a year in England are due to smoking-related conditions such as heart disease.

For more information about Guy's and St Thomas’ stop smoking service and how to get help call 020 7188 0995 or email: stopsmoking@gstt.nhs.uk.

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