MaineHealth Local Hospitals Recognized for Tobacco-Free Achievements
November 22, 2021
PORTLAND, Maine — The annual Gold Star Standards of Excellence Hospital and Healthcare Organization Program awardees have been announced for 2021, with all MaineHealth hospitals receiving recognition. The program of the MaineHealth Center for Tobacco Independence’s Breathe Easy initiative recognized 32 hospitals, eight health care organizations and one individual Gold Star Champion for efforts to address tobacco use and secondhand smoke exposure. Celebrated organizations received a plaque for their achievements in advancing their campus smoke- and tobacco-free policies as well as promoting tobacco-free lifestyles.
All Maine hospitals and healthcare organizations were encouraged to apply for recognition. This year marks the twelfth annual hospital Gold Star Standards of Excellence Program and the second year healthcare organizations were invited to apply for recognition. Organizations are recognized at the Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze levels, which are based on best practice criteria such as a smoke- and tobacco-free campus policy, annual screening for tobacco use, referral to tobacco treatment and support for employee education related to tobacco treatment.
“We applaud the ongoing efforts of Maine hospitals and healthcare organizations to address tobacco use, secondhand smoke exposure and nicotine dependence by meeting the Gold Star Standards of Excellence,” said Kristen McAuley, Tobacco Prevention Services Director for the Center for Tobacco Independence. McAuley added, “Addressing tobacco use has continued importance during the current pandemic, as the US CDC states that being a current or former cigarette smoker increases your risk of severe illness from COVID-19.”
For more information about the Gold Star Standards of Excellence, please visit BreatheEasyMaine.org/GSSE.
The Breathe Easy Initiative at the MaineHealth Center for Tobacco Independence is dedicated to providing Maine’s hospitals with the information and resources needed to make all organizations smoke and tobacco-free. Learn more at BreatheEasyMaine.org.
The program is funded by Maine Prevention Services. Maine Prevention Services is an initiative through the Maine Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) working across the state to impact tobacco, substance use and obesity.
2021 MaineHealth Hospital Gold Star Standards of Excellence Awardees:
Franklin Memorial Hospital
Maine Medical Center
Mid Coast Hospital
Pen Bay Medical Center
Southern Maine Healthcare
Spring Harbor Hospital
Waldo County General Hospital
Stephens Memorial Hospital