The public and staff are being asked to police new rules at the BGH which ban smoking anywhere within the grounds and car parks.
Introduced on Monday, this brings the BGH into line with other NHS Borders sites and is part of the Scottish Government’s plan to make every hospital smoke-free by 2015.
Dr Eric Baijal, NHS Borders and Scottish Borders Council joint director of public health, said: “Most of NHS Borders’ grounds have been smoke-free for some time now, but the Borders General Hospital has been the most challenging as it is our only acute hospital.”
He added: “Creating smoke-free hospital grounds sends out a powerful message that every visit to our health service is an opportunity to promote and improve people’s health, and that is why we believe staff, patients and visitors will support and respect this decision, and refrain from smoking until they are off the hospital site.
“NHS Borders are looking for both community and staff support to help keep our grounds smoke-free and an action plan is being developed and rolled out to ensure the success of this key health issue.”
The prohibition of smoking right across the BGH site applies to everyone and also includes the use of e-cigarettes or vaporisers.
NHS Borders has said that anyone who feels unable to stop smoking during their time in hospital can ask for nicotine replacement therapy to reduce cravings.