Smoking rates are higher among people with mental health conditions compared to the general population. Smoking reduces physical, mental and financial well-being, and interacts with psychotropic drugs. An inpatient admission provides an opportunity to engage and support smokers in smoking cessation. Compliance with Trust/NICE smoking cessation guidelines was assessed in two inpatient wards, and a questionnaire evaluated user demand for an inpatient smoking cessation service. A need for improved documentation of smoking status to identify and treat smokers routinely was revealed.
A new electronic health form was designed and introduced, and a clear pathway for onward referrals was developed. This intervention preceded the introduction of the Trust-wide smoke free policy from October 2014. The intervention doubled rates of documentation of smoking status, cessation advice and offer of NRT/referral. There were large differences between the two wards, highlighting the need for a tailored approach.
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