The staff smoking review

Daphne Kaklamanou, Jessica Gates, Thomas Brown, Hitasha Rupani, Emily Heiden, Ruth Elaine De Vos, Matthew Jones, David Lodge, Carole Fogg, Anoop Chauhan

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Background: NHS staff play a key part in smoking cessation advice and treatment. However an estimated 73,000 members of NHS staff currently smoke. This costs the NHS over £206 million a year (£2,800 per staff smoker) due to sickness absence, time spent on smoking breaks and seeking NHS care for smoking-related illness. NICE guidance states that NHS staff should be offered smoking cessation support on site, in work hours and with immediate access to nicotine-replacement therapy (NRT).

Study objectives:
To establish whether NHS Trusts are offering support for staff to stop smoking, to describe modalities of smoking cessation offered, and estimate what proportion of Trusts are ‘smoke free’.

A short electronic survey, utilising open and closed questions, was sent to occupational health providers across England. Descriptive statistics were used to summarise survey responses.

We received data for 89 Trusts in England. Staff smoking prevalence ranged from 5% to 20%. Smoke free policies were in place in 60% of Trusts, 30% of these allowed e-cigarette use on site. Support for staff varied between Trusts. Over half of Trusts provided either vouchers for NRT, on site NRT and/or on site counselling. However, 45% were only able to provide referral to external organisations at best, with 50% of these Trusts expecting staff to complete self-referrals to external organisations to access smoking cessation support. Limitations to provision of support include reduced budgets, decommissioning of local services, and prioritising patient smoking cessation before staff.

Conclusions: Smoking cessation services for NHS staff varies greatly across England. This needs to be addressed in a cost-effective and acceptable way, to proactively support NHS staff to stop smoking.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 21 Nov 2019
EventERS International Congress 2019 - Madrid, Spain
Duration: 28 Sept 20192 Oct 2019


ConferenceERS International Congress 2019


Dive into the research topics of 'The staff smoking review'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this