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MaineHealth Hospitals Awarded Gold Level for Tobacco-Free Initiatives

PORTLAND, Maine — November 12, 2015 – The Maine Tobacco-Free Hospital Network (MTFHN), an initiative of the Breathe Easy Coalition of Maine, has awarded all MaineHealth member hospitals in the state with gold level status – the highest achievement – through its 2015 Gold Star Standards of Excellence program. This annual initiative recognizes hospitals for addressing tobacco use and exposure to tobacco smoke through evidence-based policies and procedures.

Among the individual awards, Donald Watson, pharmacy manager for clinical initiatives at Maine Medical Center, received the MTFHN Gold Star Champion designation for demonstrating strong leadership and advocacy for tobacco-free environments and resources. Two MaineHealth strategic affiliates were recognized at the gold level this year, and the other two at the bronze level.

All Maine hospitals that met at least seven of the 10 standards were invited to apply for the MTFHN awards, and were recognized at the gold, silver or bronze level depending on the number of standards they met. The 10 Gold Star Standards of Excellence include creating a 100% tobacco-free campus, implementing evidence-based treatment strategies for patients, divesting from tobacco industry stock, promoting smoke-free lodging options for visitors, and providing tobacco treatment and medication benefits for employees.

“Tobacco remains the leading cause of preventable death and disease in Maine,” said Kenneth Lewis, director of the MaineHealth Center for Tobacco Independence. “This award highlights the commitment of all MaineHealth hospitals to promoting tobacco-free initiatives, and brings us closer to achieving our vision of creating the healthiest communities in America.” 

The following MaineHealth hospitals, affiliates and individuals were recognized in 2015: 

Gold Level:
Franklin Memorial Hospital
MaineGeneral Medical Center (affiliate)
Maine Medical Center
Mid Coast Hospital (affiliate)
Pen Bay Medical Center
Southern Maine Health Care
Spring Harbor Hospital
Stephens Memorial Hospital
Waldo County General Hospital

Bronze Level:
New England Rehabilitation Hospital of Portland (affiliate)
St. Mary’s Health System (affiliate) 

Gold Star Award:
Donald Watson, Maine Medical Center

For more information about the MTFHN Gold Star Standards of Excellence, visit

About MaineHealth
MaineHealth is a not-for-profit family of leading high-quality providers and other healthcare organizations working together so their communities are the healthiest in America. Ranked among the nation's top 100 integrated healthcare delivery networks, MaineHealth member organizations include Maine Medical Center, Franklin Community Health Network, LincolnHealth, Maine Behavioral Healthcare, Memorial Hospital, Pen Bay Healthcare, Southern Maine Health Care, Waldo County Healthcare, Western Maine Health, HomeHealth Visiting Nurses, NorDx and Synernet. Affiliates of MaineHealth include MaineGeneral Health, Mid Coast-Parkview Health, New England Rehabilitation Hospital of Portland and St. Mary's Health System.


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