Mid Coast Hospital Honored for Addressing Tobacco Use

Melissa Fochesato, Director of Mid Coast Hospital Community Health Promotion (left) receives a gold level recognition plaque from the MaineHealth Center for Tobacco Independence.
The Center for Tobacco Independence’s Breathe Easy initiative held the annual Tobacco-Free Hospital Gold Star Standards of Excellence Awards ceremony on Wednesday, September 27, to celebrate the efforts of Maine hospitals to address smoking and tobacco use on their campuses. This year, 33 hospitals from across the state and three gold star champions were recognized for their achievements in advancing campus smoke and tobacco-free policies as well as promoting tobacco-free lifestyles.

Mid Coast Hospital was recognized for meeting the gold level in the 2017 Gold Star Standards of Excellence Program for efforts to prohibit smoke and tobacco use on campus and address client tobacco use. Award levels 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 supporting employee education related to tobacco treatment.

"Mid Coast Hospital is committed to improving the health of this region,” said Melissa Fochesato, Director of Mid Coast Hospital Community Health Promotion. "In addition to our tobacco-free policy, we offer comprehensive tobacco education and technical assistance to community partners to create tobacco free policies. All of these efforts help to ensure that our employees, patients, and visitors, as well as the community as a whole, are as healthy as possible.” 

In 2001, Mid Coast Hospital became one of the first hospitals in Maine to ban smoking. In 2009, the hospital expanded its policy to become 100% tobacco-free on every campus throughout the health system. Mid Coast–Parkview Health’s tobacco policy states that no tobacco use of any kind (including chewing tobacco and electronic cigarettes) will be allowed in buildings, surrounding areas, parking lots, or personal vehicles.

For more information about the Tobacco-Free Hospital initiative and Gold Star Standards of Excellence recognition program, please visit MaineTobaccoFreeHospitals.org/GSSE. More information about Mid Coast Hospital Community Health & Wellness is available at www.midcoasthealth.com/wellness.