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North Shore-LIJ Facilities Now Smoke-Free, Inside and Out

December 31, 2009

GREAT NECK, NY – The North Shore-LIJ Health System announced today that its hospitals and other facilities across Long Island, Queens and Staten Island will become entirely smoke free, beginning with the New Year. The new policy, which takes effect January 1, includes an outdoor smoking ban on all North Shore-LIJ properties. It applies to all employees, patients, visitors, vendors, volunteers and medical staff.

“We are optimistic that campus-wide smoking bans will help us reach our goal of providing a healthier environment for all patients, visitors and employees,” said Michael J. Dowling, president and chief executive officer of the 14-hospital health system, the largest in the region. “As with any change, we realize there are challenges we’ll have to overcome, one of the first being to provide smokers with the support they need to quit.”

North Shore-LIJ provides free smoking cessation counseling at its Center for Tobacco Control in Great Neck, including group classes that are held every six weeks (the next class begins January 5) as well as individual therapy.  To enroll, call 516-466-1980 or go to: www.northshorelij.com/NSLIJ/stopsmoking. Those interested in kicking the habit can also contact the New York State Smokers’ Quitline at 1-866-NY-QUITS (1-866-697-8487), or talk to their doctor.

About North Shore-LIJ Health System
The nation's third largest, non-profit, secular healthcare system, the North Shore-LIJ Health System cares for people of all ages throughout Long Island, Queens and Staten Island – a service area encompassing more than five million people. The health system consists of 14 hospitals, 17 long-term care facilities, The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, three trauma centers, five home health agencies, the Hospice Care Network and dozens of outpatient centers. In addition, North Shore-LIJ is partnering with Hofstra University to develop a new medical school. North Shore-LIJ’s owned facilities house about 5,000 beds, employ about 10,000 nurses and have affiliations with more than 7,000 physicians. Its workforce of about 38,000 is the largest on Long Island and the ninth largest in New York City.  For more information, go to www.northshorelij.com.

Contacts: Terry Lynam/Brian Mulligan
                  516-465-2600
                  tlynam@nshs.edu
                  bmulliga@nshs.edu

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