Saturday, June 06, 2009
Friday, June 05, 2009
On the 31st of May the hospital where I work went totally smoke free, including the psych ward. I'm not a smoker, but a lot of the staff are, and even more importantly a lot of the patients are. Until Sunday they could smoke outdoors in our courtyard. The patients have been given patches, lozenges or nicotine inhalers but they cannot smoke anywhere on the hospital grounds. I totally disagree with this. Many of the chronically mentall ill have nothing in their lives except coffee and cigarettes. We are holding them against their will, giving them only decaf coffee and now no cigarettes. I think it is a human rights issue, as do most of the staff, but it is out of our control. And the staff who smoke are having to leave the ward to go off hospital grounds to smoke, leaving the ward in a more vulnerable position for periods of time. It is like naughty school children smoking behind the shelter shed. It all feels quite ridiculous. Big Brother has taken control.