12 Aug 2022

Western Trust renew the emphasis on their 'Smokefree Policy'

The Western Health and Social Care Trust (Western Trust) has today 25 June 2018 launched its revised Smokefree Policy. As a leading Health and Social Care organisation, the Trust is encouraging a healthier lifestyle for the public, our patients and staff and smoking on Trust grounds is not part of this. The amended policy has been developed to reflect comments and complaints from patients, staff and visitors. The main additions to the policy include: - No vaping. - A stronger direction for staff roles. - Emphasising the role managers have to support staff in implementing the Smokefree Policy. - Staff should request carers/service users who smoke, to refrain from smoking an hour before the scheduled visit and for the duration of the visit. - Staff may face disciplinary action in instances where they fail to implement the policy. Dr Dermot Hughes, Medical Director for the Western Trust said: “Smokefree is everyone’s business and we all have a responsibility to ensure the healthiest and safest environment for our patients, visitors and staff. “The Western Trust first embarked on its Smokefree journey in 2014 and we have learned a lot since then. Smokefree still remains challenging, however we feel that our revised policy has a stronger direction on staff roles and extra measures have been put in place to support staff. "Every Western Trust employee has a responsibility to ensure compliance with and implementation of the Smokefree policy. Staff should take pride in working in a smokefree environment and ask anyone they see smoking to 'stub it out' and advise them about our Smokefree policy and our stop smoking services. However, we equally need the support of the public to comply with our Smokefree Policy when they are visiting our Trust properties.” Dr Hughes continued: “The role of the Western Trust is to provide care and enable people to live healthier lives. We are committed to reducing the use of tobacco and its harmful health effects. It is important to focus not just on policing the changes but on encouraging a cultural shift, so it becomes unthinkable that anyone - staff, patients or visitors would smoke on a Western Trust facility. “I understand how difficult it is to quit and we are committed to doing everything we can do to support staff and patients to successfully quit. Patients admitted to hospital who do smoke, will be offered advice and support including nicotine replacement therapy to ease withdrawal symptoms, as well as support from the smoking cessation team. The public can also avail of our free weekly smoking cessation clinics which offer ongoing support and advice to people wishing to stop smoking.” Pictured above: Launching Smokefree revisited, Dr Anne Kilgallen, Western Trust Chief Executive with staff, the Smoking Cessation Team and Service User.

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