2006 News Stories

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The Queen's Medical Center has completely banned smoking, effective November 16, 2006. Smoking will not be allowed in any location on QMC grounds and all Queen's properties. The smoking ban coincides with the effective date of the new State smoking law and the Great American Smoke-Out. The Legislature passed Act 295 into law to protect the public health and welfare from exposure to secondhand smoke by prohibiting smoking in places open to the public and places of employment. The statewide smoking ban includes bars, nightclubs, restaurants, retail stores, shopping malls, airports, convention centers, educational facilities and health care institutions. The State Department of Health will enforce the law, and institutions such as Queen's will be responsible for posting signs that clearly state that smoking is prohibited.

Health care professionals have long stated that tobacco smoke is a major contributor to many health problems. Queen's believes the smoking ban is in the best health interests of employees, patients, visitors and all others. The new State law provides an opportune time to prohibit smoking at any location on Medical Center grounds. Although the law does not necessarily ban smoking in areas far away from buildings, it allows business and organizations to declare an entire establishment and its property smoke free, a course Queen's has decided to follow.

Queen's realizes that the State smoking ban may create difficulties for many who smoke. A variety of education, resources, programs and other support are available for those who wish to quit. Smokers may also want to consider asking their doctors about prescription medication that helps stop craving for cigarettes and eliminates the pleasure derived from smoking. Patient care staff will continue to ask patients and families about quitting, give advice on quitting, offer cessation information or refer them to the Hawai’i State Quitline at 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1.800.784.8669). The Quitline will accept consented, faxed referrals; the form can be found at www.CallitQuitsHawaii.org. For more resources and information, call the American Cancer Society at 1-800-ACS-2345 or visit www.cancer.org. If you smoke, consider taking advantage of this opportunity to ban smoking from your life.

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