At an awards ceremony in September at the Maine Hospital Association in Augusta, the Breathe Easy Coalition of Maine celebrated the efforts of Maine hospitals to address smoking and tobacco use on their campuses.

Cary Medical Center
Cary Medical Center

The event highlighted the 2017 Maine Tobacco-Free Hospital Network Gold Star Standards of Excellence Program award winners including Cary Medical Center in Caribou.  Thirty (30) Maine hospitals and three individual champions are being recognized for their achievements in advancing their organization’s smoke and tobacco-free policies as well as promoting tobacco-free lifestyles in their communities.

The annual Gold Star Standards of Excellence program recognizes health care organizations for their efforts to address best practice standards around tobacco use, exposure and quitting supports. Cary Medical Center was recognized at the gold level in the 2015, 2016 and 2017 programs. 

cKris Doody, RN and CEO at Cary Medical Center said that the hospital continues to advance a non-smoking agenda. 

“We recognize, as a health care institution, the dangers of tobacco”, said Doody.  “We were one of the first hospitals in Maine to go to a smoke free campus and we continue to look at additional ways to reduce the rate of smoking in our service area.  We appreciate the work of the Breath Easy Coalition and we are very pleased to have been recognized at the Gold Level once again this year.” 

Tobacco use continues to be the leading cause of preventable disease and death in the country and a major contributor to health care costs.  "Meeting these standards requires hard work and commitment from these health care organizations, and the Breathe Easy Coalition of Maine is pleased to be able to honor their dedication," said Sarah Mayberry of the Breathe Easy Coalition.

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