Smoke-free mental health settings: What are the perceived benefits and support needs of clinicians?
Lisa Huddlestone, Harpreet Sohal and Dr Elena Ratschen
Lisa Huddlestone Research Associate, Division of Epidemiology & Public Health, UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies, University of Nottingham
Part of a wider programme of work to evaluate the implementation of completely smokefree environments in mental health settings, this study aimed to explore health and social care professionals perceptions of the forthcoming implementation of NICE PH48 and to identify the factors that are perceived to contribute to successful implementation.
Using a sub-group analysis of a trust wide survey of staff well-being, we utilised descriptive statistics and qualitative content analysis. Respondents to the smoking-related section of the survey (n=315, 13%) generally expressed positive attitudes towards the smokefree policy, reporting a variety of potential benefits, including: parity in working arrangements, health gains for staff and patients; and environmental advantages. Smokers (n=49, 16%) reported low levels of concern with managing their own smoking behaviour while on duty. The importance of strategic planning that included comprehensive communication, training and education, and pathways to support patient abstinence from tobacco, prior to smokefree policy implementation was identified by respondents.
Our findings suggest that health and social care professionals regard the implementation of PH48 positively. However development of staff capacity and effective support pathways is