Professor Terence Stephenson, the head of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, has said that smoking must be banned in cars that carry children.
"We should make it illegal to smoke in cars when children are in the vehicle," he said. "You can't inflict this on your colleagues at work any more. Why should we treat our children's health as a lower priority than our employees?"
Writing for the BBC website's Scrubbing Up column, Prof Stephenson rubbished claims that such a move would create a nanny state adding that as health professionals "you just can't win".
"It is admittedly slightly easier when children are involved - we are naturally risk-averse with our own children and by extension with other people's - this is legitimate nanny territory," he concluded.