Atlantic General Hospital, Berlin Nursing and Rehabilitation Center and the Worcester County Health Department are joining together to become a tobacco-free campus on May 1, 2013.
The new tobacco-free campus policy comprises cigarettes, pipes, and cigars as well as all smokeless tobacco products, which are prohibited in all buildings, parking lots and grounds along Healthway Drive in Berlin as well as all Atlantic General Hospital and Health System facilities throughout the region.
"This change will help support the health of our clients and employees. We look forward to the benefits of this new policy," said Worcester County Health Officer Debbie Goeller. "It is our hope that those who use tobacco products will consider participating in one of our free smoking cessation programs."
Several of Worcester County Health Department’s other locations are already tobacco free.
“Our organizations share a common goal of improving the health and lives of individuals in our community,” said Tracey R. Hall, BSN, RN, who leads the Employee Wellness Program at Atlantic General Hospital. “Becoming tobacco free to protect our patients, associates and visitors is an important step.”
“Tobacco has been recognized for years as a contributor to the increasing health care costs in our country because of the increased disease risk, so it is important for our campus to be an example of good health practices, “ says Michael Franklin, president and CEO of Atlantic General Hospital. “Coordination of these efforts with all facilities on Healthway Drive was important for the success of this initiative.”
The facilities join a growing number of colleges and universities, municipalities, and hospitals and other healthcare organizations across Maryland and the U.S. that are banning the use of tobacco on their grounds.
About Atlantic General Hospital
Atlantic General Hospital has been providing quality health care to the residents of Worcester, Wicomico, Somerset (Md.) and Sussex (Del.) Counties since May 1993. Built by the commitment and generosity of a dedicated community, the hospital’s state-of-the-art facility in Berlin, Md. combines old-fashioned personal attention with the latest in technology and services. Atlantic General Health System, its network of more than 25 primary care provider and specialist offices, care for residents and visitors throughout the region. For more information about Atlantic General Hospital, visit www.atlanticgeneral.org.
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