The proportion of people in psychiatric hospitals who smoke is far higher than that of smokers in the general population and at least three quarters of people with a drug problem also smoke. This makes it particularly hard to implement a no-smoking policy in inpatient units. A study of 77 service users receiving inpatient treatment for drug and alcohol dependence has found that patients generally had a negative attitude towards a no-smoking policy on the wards with three-quarters of them saying that they would be unlikely to accept treatment if such a policy were implemented. Although staff members recognised the benefits of a no-smoking policy they worried that it would lead to increased difficulties for patients and to patients leaving the unit before they had overcome their other addictions. Although a quarter of patients wanted to give up smoking it was generally felt that this was too difficult during treatment and both patients and staff felt that the introduction of a no-smoking policy would be unattractive and potentially disruptive to treatment.
Hill, Robert ... [et al] - 'Don't you think we're giving up enough already?' Attitudes of patients and staff on an in-patient addiction treatment service to a proposed 'No Smoking' policy Journal of Substance Use August 2007, 12(4), 225-231