Staff must set an example when a hospital becomes a no-smoking zone and even act as 'smoke police', the chairman of Airedale NHS Trust told board members.

Colin Millar wants to see staff stopping people who break the rules by smoking anywhere in the hospital or its grounds.

People will not even be permitted to sneak a quick drag in their cars in the car park when the ban comes into effect on Wednesday - National No Smoking Day.

A similar ban would be adopted at all Airedale Primary Care Trust (PCT) sites from the same day, it was also announced yesterday.

Mr Millar said: "We are giving instructions to our staff about how to respond if they see an employee or patient breaching the rules.

"No member of the board can turn a blind eye if they see someone breaching the rules."

The only exception to the ban would be in the new psychiatric unit, due to be opened later this year, the board was told.

Roger Pollard, director of human resources, said the smoke-free policy was aimed at protecting patients, visitors and staff from the hazards associated with smoking as well as helping people to kick the habit.

The challenge was what happened in the hospital grounds because it was widely accepted that there was no smoking inside the hospital. "Our advice to staff is that if they see a smoker in the grounds, to treat the matter sensitively and ask politely for them not to smoke," he said.

Staff must also report other members of staff if they were seen smoking and action would be taken through the relevant manager.

Over the weeks following the smoking ban, the number of instances where people broke the rules would be monitored.

There would be only one area in the whole of the grounds where smoking would be allowed and that would be in the new psychiatric unit to be opened later this year and run by the Bradford Care Trust.

Mr Pollard said provision would be made for certain patients to smoke in a special area of the new building out of public sight.

Chairman of Airedale PCT Pam Essler said the policy was in line with other strategies by PCTs across the district.

"It's all about setting an example as an organisation. We are targeting smoking and its risks, rather than smokers," she said.

l Kim Gay, Airedale NHS Trust's interim director of finance, told members the trust would be in the red by £3.8 million by the end of the financial year, about £500,000 over the target of £3.288 million.

"Managers and clinicians across the Trust are continuing to work on ways to deliver the lowest possible expenditure position by the year end," she said.