Smoking within 15 metres of a hospital building is now banned in Scotland as a new law comes into force.
The change applies to everyone including staff, visitors and patients.
Those found to have flouted the ban could face a fixed penalty notice of £50 and a £1,000 fine if taken to court.
It will apply to all NHS hospital buildings in Scotland, including awnings, canopies, or any other overhanging structure connected to a hospital building.
This applies even if they extend further than 15 metres from a hospital buildings.
Signs will be in place at main entrances to hospital grounds and on buildings to warn people that there is a ban on smoking within 15 metres of the buildings.
Posters and leaflets have already been distributed to hospitals and GP surgeries to let them know about the ban coming into force.
The change was made as part of the Scottish Government’s aims to make Scotland tobacco-free by 2034.
A voluntary smoke-free hospital grounds policy was intro0duced in 2015 in Scotland.
Public health minister Maree Todd said: “Everyone knows that smoking is bad for our health and hospital patients in particular should be protected from the harmful effects of second-hand smoke.
“This new law is the latest step in our bold plan to make Scotland tobacco-free by 2034 – building on our dedicated stop-smoking services and early intervention measures to stop youngsters picking up the habit altogether.
“Anyone looking to quit can contact the NHS QuitYourWay Helpline or speak to their local pharmacy to discuss the range of help available.”
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