WINCHESTER hospital will be going completely smoke free, with vaping banned along with cigarettes.

hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs the Royal Hampshire County Hospital on Romsey Road, will also be rolling out the ban at the Andover War Memorial Hospital and Basingstoke and North Hampshire Hospital.

is taking positive action to make sure that patients and visitors are not exposed to cigarette smoke on their way into and out of hospital.

The move means that from October 1, patients and visitors will not be exposed to smoke on their way into and out of trust's hospitals.

Alex Whitfield, chief executive of Hampshire Hospitals, said: “Going smoke-free will mean a more pleasant and safe environment for everyone who uses or works in our hospitals and it is a step we are taking as part of our commitment to improving the health and wellbeing of our staff, patients and visitors.

“It will protect people, particularly vulnerable patients such as newborn babies and people with respiratory problems, from the harmful effects of second-hand smoke on the way into and out of our hospitals.

“As a major employer and provider of hospital services to people across Hampshire, we have a responsibility to help reduce smoking and, in turn, the serious illnesses related to it. We will be providing lots of additional support to help people stop smoking as part of the programme, so we hope that this initiative will also help to reduce smoking.”