Susan Morrison: Hospital smokers need a place of their own

Smokers need a place to go, even in hospitals
Smokers need a place to go, even in hospitals
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Some signs are routinely ignored. Don’t walk on the grass is a particular red flag to any Scot.

‘No Smoking on Hospital Grounds’ is so roundly flouted I wondered if they were bussing in folks wearing their jammies, just to have a quick puff at the Western.

There are warnings everywhere. Smokers would be asked to leave the grounds. No one was. Well, how exactly could you do that?

A pair of auld fellas in matching stripes were out in wheelchairs, expertly rolling their own and puffing away in the sun, once they had removed their oxygen masks.

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Now, how exactly are you going to ask them to leave the premises? Wheel them down to Stockbridge, jammies, baffies and all, then abandon them at the bus stop?

Smoking is best done away from others, and the open windows of wards above. Folks like baccy brothers are not going to ditch the rollies just for a hospital stay.

The stress of hospitals, even for visitors, can have people reaching for the fags.

Surely, we are all grown-up enough to agree that the NHS wouldn’t be encouraging smoking if, instead of pointless signs, they had a set space for smokers?

They’re a law-abiding bunch and would probably use it, much to the quiet gratitude of the non-smokers on the benches.

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