Kyogle hospital stubs out the fags
Kyogle Memorial Health Service Hospital this week became the latest North Coast health facility to be declared an official Smoke Free Zone.
Kyogle joins eight other hospitals, including Lismore Base and Nimbin, who have made the entire grounds smoke free for patients, staff and visitors.
Smoke Free coordinator Annie Kia said that quitting is the most important thing that a person can do to improve their health.
Smoking is the single most preventable cause of serious illness and death in Australia, killing 19,000 people every year. This is more than the combined total deaths caused by car accidents, drowning, heroin overdose, falls and suicide, Annie said.
Smoking cessation in the weeks prior to surgery significantly reduces the chances of wound infection and post-operative complications. Smokers also have a risk of experiencing problems while under anaesthetic. Ideally patients should quit about six weeks before their surgery.
All inpatients are advised not to smoke during their admission and are offered nicotine replacement therapy (nicotine patches, inhaler or lozenges) in order to be comfortable during their time in hospital.
An information leaflet, Get Better Faster Quit Smoking Now Before Surgery is offered to elective surgery patients who smoke.