Hospital staff smoke in no smoking zone

RAMSAY Health is powerless to stop its hospital staff from having a puff at the clearly marked "no smoking" area near a hospital entrance.

A Coolum resident, who asked to remain anonymous, was visiting the hospital last Saturday and was disgusted to see hospital staff smoking in uniform at the bus stop, near the canteen entrance.

There were clearly visible "no smoking" signs around the area where staff were enjoying a smoke.

She wrote to the hospital asking why there were no designated smoking areas for staff, to avoid hospital visitors being subjected to second hand smoke.

Should businesses provide staff with smoking areas?

This poll ended on 20 March 2016.

Current Results

Yes. Instead of "no smoking" signs everywhere, it would be easy to set aside one area for smoking.


No. There's no restriction on smoking more than five metres away from a building, staff could walk five metres if they wanted to.


I don't care where people smoke, as long as it's not in my face.


This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

But Sunshine Coast University Private Hospital Executive Caroline McMahon wrote back saying the hospital couldn't provide smoking areas for its staff.

"Due to regulations in place, we are unable to provide a designated smoking area for our staff on the hospital campus," she said.

And while every effort was made to encourage staff not to smoke while at work, it was a "personal choice".

Further, she said the bus stop was "not hospital property and the signage there has not been erected by our facility".

"The same regulations which prohibit us from having a designated smoking area on site, set out that you cannot smoke within five metres of a health facility.

"The smoking regulations in place penalises the individual if they are caught smoking in these zones, not the facility.

"We remind people that it is them who will incur the financial penalty if caught."

Topics:  hospital hospital staff no smoking ramsay health care smoking

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