In a bid to stop people smoking on site, Blackpool Victoria Hospital has installed an anti-smoking tannoy system which can be activated by staff, visitors or patients.
Pre-recorded messages will be played reminding smokers that the hospital is a smoke-free site and that smoking is not allowed anywhere on the hospital grounds.
The system has been installed outside the hospital Main Entrance and the Women and Children’s Unit where people have been seen regularly smoking cigarettes.
The messages, which are played on a loudspeaker, can be activated by pressing buttons situated at the Main Entrance reception desk, on the outside wall near the car parking office and on the internal wall within the Women and Children’s Unit.
Healthier workforce manager, Hannah Foxcroft, said: “The messages are designed to inform smokers that they should not light up on site and alert them to positive ways in which we can help them quit for the sake of their health and that of those around them.
“Smoking is an addiction and this system aims to encourage people to quit. We are a healthcare provider and it is vital we take every possible step to discourage smoking for the good of all our patients, visitors and staff. People often have to pass through cigarette smoke when accessing the hospital and this is totally unacceptable.
Blackpool has one of the highest smoking prevalence rates in the country and the highest number of hospital related admissions for smoking related illness in the North West.
Deputy Chief Executive of Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Tim Bennett, said: “This is another step being taken to ensure the message that our Trust is a smoke-free organisation is loud and clear to all.
“A system like this allows members of staff and the public to help us achieve this goal. We ask staff, patients and visitors to get behind us and if they see a person smoking outside one of these entrances that they push one of the buttons to activate the messages to remind the smoker that smoking is prohibited anywhere on Trust site.”
For information on local stop smoking services please see the below links or call the free national helpline number on 0300 123 1044:
- Blackpool Service Information; https://www.blackpool.gov.uk/Residents/Health-and-social-care/Public-health/Stop-Smoking.aspx
- Fylde, Wyre, North Lancashire Service Information; http://www.quitsquad.nhs.uk/index.php