FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 18, 2016
Contact: Stacie J. Newton
Office: (973) 972--8761
Mobile: (201) 463-2335
University Hospital and Rutgers Biomedical Health Sciences
in Newark Collaborate to Form a Smoke, Tobacco and Vapor-Free Campus
The use of all smoke, tobacco and vapor-related products are
prohibited effective on the date of the Great American Smokeout
Newark, NJ -- On November 17th, the date of the Great American Smokeout, University Hospital and Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences joined together to celebrate its first day as a Smoke, Tobacco and Vapor-Free campus, effective on November 17.
The initiative is the result of months of planning, with an overall focus of creating a healthier environment at University Hospital and Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences at Newark for employees, patients, visitors and the public at-large.
“As of today, across our entire hospital campus, we are showing our employees, our patients and their families, and all of the people who make our community great, that we are truly health leaders, said John N. Kastanis, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO of University Hospital. “By not allowing people to smoke on the sidewalks in front of our buildings, in the entryways, in our gardens and hospital grounds, and in our other outside areas, we are sending a clear and urgent message that smoking tobacco is bad for your health, and we are leading by example.” said Kastanis.
According to the American Cancer Society, more than 40 million Americans who smoke cigarettes and use tobacco remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the world. Although rates of smoking have dropped from 42% in 1965 to 17% in 2014, cigar, pipe, and hookah are other dangerous and addictive ways to smoke tobacco are on the rise.
A program and ribbon-cutting event was held on November 17th at 8:30 AM at the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey at University Hospital to celebrate November 17th as the campus’ first day as a Smoke, Tobacco and Vapor-Free Campus. Photos from the event are available here: http://bit.ly/2f7rhMl
The event included John N. Kastanis, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO, University Hospital, Robert L. Johnson, FAAP, MD, The Sharon and Joseph Muscarelle Endowed Dean, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School, and Karen Blumfield, Esq., Executive Director of the Global Advisors on Smoke-free Policy (GASP). The program also included Andrew Berman, MD, Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Medicine, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School and Director, Division of Pulmonary Medicine, University Hospital. Dr. Berman chaired the Steering Committee that oversaw the implementation of the initiative, which included a multi-disciplinary committee of faculty and staff.
Preparations for this campus-wide initiative has been underway since April 2016 and November 17th at 12:01 AM reflects the first full day that both University Hospital and Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences in Newark will be a smoke, tobacco and vapor-free campus.
To encourage smokers to quit smoking, employees, visitors and the public at-large will have the opportunity to learn about University Hospital’s many smoking cessation programs and meet with a smoking cessation counselor. Information about the hospital’s smoking cessation counseling can be obtained by contacting the hospital at (973) 972-4300 or uhnj.org. All smoking cessation programs are open to the public.
From L-R: Alejandrina Canelo Villafana, MS, CHES, Health Educator II, Ambulatory Care Center; Robert L. Johnson, FAAP, MD, The Sharon and Joseph Muscarelle Endowed Dean, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School; Karen Blumfield, Esq., Executive Director of the Global Advisors on Smoke-free Policy (GASP); Andrew Berman, MD, Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Medicine, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School and Director, Division of Pulmonary Medicine, University Hospital; Monica Hanna, MPH, CHES, Health Educator-Healthy Heart Program and John N. Kastanis, MBA, FACHE, President and CEO, University Hospital.
University Hospital is one of the nation’s leading academic medical centers, and is the Level 1 Trauma Center for Northern New Jersey. Located at University Heights in Newark, New Jersey, University Hospital is a principal teaching hospital of Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences and a regional resource for advanced services across many medical specialties. For more information about University Hospital, please visit www.uhnj.org.