Today London Health Sciences Centre decided to immediately restrict where smokers can lurk outside of city hospitals.
I’m old enough to remember when you could smoke IN a hospital IN your bed when you were a patient! The practise was banned long before I ever set body in a gurney but I do recall older relatives puffing away in their rooms. Then later, they’d have to shuffle down to the common area. Then it was to the cafeteria. Then, finally, outside, where patients, visitors and medical staff alike all gather to suck on a smoke.
My childhood family doctor died last week of a respiratory illness and one of my most vivid memories of him was the big, heavy, round ashtray on his consulting room desk that always seemed to have a fresh mountain of ashes in it. It seems impossible now but that’s what it was like back when there wasn’t as much evidence that tobacco smoke could kill you.
OK, so my quibble about office buildings may be a little bit much for some smokers to accept but …hospitals? Surely no one thinks smoking around a hospital is a good idea! Now London hospitals are finally taking a stand on the issue. Officials say they expect to get an earful from smokers but that’s better than getting a faceful of their exhaust at every exit.