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Johns Hopkins Medicine Trustees Support Statewide Smoking Ban in Public Spaces - 03/06/2007

Johns Hopkins Medicine Trustees Support Statewide Smoking Ban in Public Spaces

Release Date: March 6, 2007

The governing board of Johns Hopkins Medicine today unanimously voted to throw its support behind Maryland legislators’ efforts to ban smoking in all indoor public spaces in the state.
 
A resolution passed at a regular meeting of the Johns Hopkins Medicine Board of Trustees stated that the Board “confirms and states its commitment to the public health of the citizens of Maryland and requests that the Maryland General Assembly swiftly pass legislation banning smoking in all indoor public spaces in the State of Maryland.”

“Saving lives and restoring health is what Johns Hopkins Medicine is all about,” said C. Michael Armstrong, chairman of the Board.  “Banning smoking in public places would accomplish that goal and reduce the number of people who die as a result of this potentially lethal habit each year.”

 “The health hazards of smoking are grounded in solid scientific evidence and beyond dispute,” said Edward D. Miller, M.D., CEO of Johns Hopkins Medicine and dean of The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “As a Baltimore institution with a world-renowned medical school, school of public health, hospital and research facilities, Hopkins has an obligation to speak out on an issue that poses an imminent health danger not only for smokers but for the innocent bystanders exposed to this smoke.”

Johns Hopkins Medicine, with a total of 26,676 employees - including a medical staff of 4,797 and 4,613 registered nurses - is a collaboration of The Johns Hopkins University and The Johns Hopkins Health System that unites the faculty physicians and scientists of the School of Medicine with the organizations, health professionals and facilities of The Johns Hopkins Health System. The health system includes The Johns Hopkins Hospital, Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center and Howard County General Hospital, as well as organizations devoted to home care, outpatient care and long-term care. Its Board includes trustees of both the Health System and the University.

Currently, smoking in public places is against the law in Baltimore City and in five Maryland counties, in 14 states, in 250 local jurisdictions outside Maryland and in eight countries. The Baltimore City Council on February 26th passed its own no-smoking ban.

A copy of the full Johns Hopkins Medicine Board of Trustees resolution is attached.

Two recent studies conducted by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health conclude that people breathing second-hand smoke indoors face serious health risks. For details of the research on the dangers and prevalence of second-hand smoke in Maryland, go to  http://www.jhsph.edu/.

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