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Inter-Lakes to ban all smoking

TICONDEROGA - Inter-Lakes Health will go tobacco-free April 15.

That means there will be no smoking or tobacco use of any kind allowed anywhere on campus at anytime. The designated smoking areas will cease to exist and smoking in parking lots, on lawns and in parked cars will be prohibited.

"Addressing tobacco use as a health care organization and a major area employer is the single most significant intervention ILH can take to improve the health and wellness of our employees, volunteers, patients and visitors," Barbara Wright of Inter-Lakes said.

"It's the people who come to work, day after day, that define an organization and make it strong," she continued. "ILH recognizes this and appreciates all of our staff. The greatest gift we can give back to them - beside the paycheck - is the gift of improved health and well-being. After all, improved health is ILH's best - selling product."

Inter-lakes Health will host a smoking cessation strategy and support seminar April 8 1:30-5:30 p.m. in the Ethan Allen Library of Heritage Commons.

Inter-Lakes Health has enlisted the help of three community partners: The Adirondack Tobacco Free Network, the American Cancer Society and the North Country Tobacco Cessation Center.

"These mission-driven organizations have assisted health care systems across the state with this same endeavor, and they've learned a great deal," Wright said. "They've offered their experience and expertise to help us implement our tobacco-free campus.

"Representatives from these three organizations will be here on April 8 and members of the public are invited to stop by," she said. "They will provide assistance to employees that smoke, including limited nicotine replacement therapy. They can coach employees who choose to stop smoking, and they can also provide help for those employees who need to remain tobacco free during the work day, but are not prepared to quit at this moment. This support won't end with that particular day. ILH is making ongoing support services available to our staff as they need it.

"ILH hopes that becoming smoke-free will communicate a message that encourages others to take control of their health and models the very behaviors that can improve their quality of life," Wright said. "Healthcare professionals, in particular physicians, are our trusted source for information and support. We encourage everyone who smokes and wishes to quit to see your doctor for help."

The Smoking Cessation Strategy and Support event is free and open to the public.

For more information, call Wright at 585-3716 or email bwright@interlakeshealth.com.

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