Derriford Welcomes Vaping

Posted 4th February 2020 by Dave Cross
Derriford Hospital, a large teaching hospital and part of the Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust, has issued its new policy on smoking. Hospital managers have decided that they aren’t going to include vaping as part of the smoking ban and are welcoming considerate users to carry on vaping on site.

Derriford recently announced that it was the first hospital in the UK to benefit from new high-tech heart-lung machines following a wider £4million investment in cardiothoracic surgery over 10 years. In 22 years, the Cardiothoracics Department at Derriford has operated on 25,000 heart patients.

This forward-thinking facility, the largest in Devon, has been convinced by Public Health England’s arguments that vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking and offers a reduced harm approach to using nicotine.

Its smoking policy means that tobacco use is banned across the whole site, but considerate vaping is now “welcomed”.

Professor John Newton, director of health improvement at Public Health England, responded to the news: "There is no situation where it would be better for your health to continue smoking rather than switching completely to vaping. The sooner you stop smoking completely the better. We are alert to the risks and the UK has taken a careful approach to maximise the opportunities that e-cigarettes present to help more smokers quit."

Social media responded positively to the news, prompting the Plymouth Trust to write: “Thanks to everyone who has shared thoughts about vaping”. It explained that a visual border would created around perimeter of site with cigarette bins and signage showing where the tobacco free area begins. It is going to carry out a publicity campaign to promote the Trust as allowing vaping as part of its strategy to reduce the smoking of tobacco.

The news from Derriford follows Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust recognising the role vaping can play in cutting tobacco-related harm and gave Ecigwizard the chance to run stores at two NHS sites and also allowed vaping across its sites.

At the time, Joe Lucas, Ecigwizard’s Head of Retail for said: “We’re incredibly happy to announce the opening of our two shops at Sandwell and City Hospital, supporting the Trust’s smoke-free status. We are keen to offer vaping as an alternative to smoking, as a means to help people cut down or quit. Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust chose to partner with Ecigwizard because of our attention to detail on quality and safety, from testing e-liquids in a purpose-built laboratory and state of the art cleanroom.”

Following Sandwell and West Birmingham’s positive move, The Diana Princess of Wales Hospital in Grimsby began advertising the benefits of vaping on its smoking shelters.


  • Plymouth Hospitals NHS Trust – [link]
  • Vape Stores in Hospitals, POTV – [link]
  • NHS Success – [link]

Image by Sasin Tipchai from Pixabay

 Dave Cross
Article by Dave Cross
Freelance writer, physicist, karateka, dog walker