VA NY Harbor - First Hospital in NYC to Achieve Gold Star Status

VA NY Harbor Healthcare System is the first hospital in New York City to achieve Gold Star Status as part of the Tobacco Free Hospitals Campaign. They were awarded this status for reviewing and updating their tobacco polices and systems of care on their Manhattan and Brooklyn campuses, as well as at the St. Albans Community Living Center. Thanks to the VA’s robust electronic health record, clinicians have been screening for tobacco use among their veterans since the mid 1990’s. Each tobacco user is assessed for how much they smoke and  a tailored quit plan is developed. The medical and behavioral health team work very closely at VA NY Harbor to assure that their veterans are fully supported with nicotine replacement therapy, other appropriate cessation medications and the psychosocial support needed to quit smoking.

The VA is leading the way in tobacco control by demonstrating a significant commitment to the care and health of its patients and employees. On June 24th, Martina Parauda, Director of the VA New York Harbor, accepted a plaque from Dr. Susan M. Kansagra, Deputy Commissioner at the NYC Health Department, to commemorate this tremendous achievement.

Congratulations on your success, VA NY Harbor Healthcare!

Flushing Hospital Medical Center Featured on National Electronic Medical Records Webinar

Last month, Flushing Hospital Medical Center (FHMC) was featured on a national webinar: Maximizing Electronic Medical Records to Help Patients Quit Tobacco.

Dr. Siamack Nemazie, Chief Medical Informatics Officer at FHMC in Queens, discussed his experience using electronic medical records to identify, treat, and track patients’ tobacco use and cessation attempts. He provided information on how he added “best practice advisories” in the medical order set and educational care plans in order to prompt clinicians to support patients seeking to quit tobacco.

You can access a recording of the webinar here.
You can also access the slide presentation here

Electronic Cigarette Policy Update

Recently, the Smoke-Free Air Act (SFAA) of New York City was amended to include a ban on electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) in all locations where smoking is prohibited, including all enclosed areas and on hospital grounds. This new law went into effect on April 29, 2014. Now is the time to update your hospital’s policy to reflect this legislation. Contact us if you have any questions about this law or how to incorporate this new law into your hospitals policy.

For more on the Smoke-Free Air Act, click here.  

The First Ever Tobacco-Free Hospitals Campaign Roundtable Discussion

The Tobacco-Free Hospitals Campaign held its first Roundtable Discussion on January 29, 2014 Entitled “Effective Strategies for Gaining Compliance with a Tobacco-Free Campus Policy”, it featured Nancy Copperman, MS, RD, CDN and Pat Folan, DNP, RN, CTTS of the North Shore-LIJ (NS-LIJ) Health System, along with Christine Hollie, AVP, from Staten Island University Hospital.

 NS-LIJ staff shared best practices and successful strategies for implementing their robust tobacco-free campus policy, which extends to all leased and owned properties of its 15 hospitals in Queens, Staten Island, Manhattan and Long Island. Hospitals from all five boroughs attended this forum and discussed their struggles and successes with developing and enforcing their own tobacco-free campus policies.  If you were unable to attend, please contact us for resources and materials.

New Web Address for Online Tools and Resources

As a member of the NYC DOHMH Tobacco-Free Hospitals Campaign, you have access to comprehensive tools and resources through Prevention Partners (formerly NC Prevention Partners). 

Please visit their new web addresswww.forprevention.orgto access your account.

Patient Quit Tobacco System Update

Prevention Partners is working to improve the overall quality and user-friendliness of both the Inpatient and Outpatient Quit System, and new resources are being added to the toolkit. In order to implement this upgrade, the system will be offline during the week of March 8-16, 2014. Log in on Monday, March 17, 2014, to access the new and improved Patient Quit Tobacco tools. 

Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialist Training

The Rutgers-Tobacco Dependence Program is offering a 5-Day Certified Tobacco Treatment Specialist Training (CTTS) in New Brunswick, NJ on March 24-28, 2014. This training prepares health professionals to provide intensive treatment for tobacco dependence. The training meets all of the requirements contained in the US Public Health Service Guidelines as well as the standards for competencies for tobacco treatment specialists developed by the Association for the Treatment of Tobacco Use and Dependence (ATTUD). The deadline to register for the training is March 3, 2014.

For more information about Rutgers-Tobacco Dependence Program and the upcoming training, click here.  

New York City Health Department Smoking Cessation Medication Prescribing Chart, Instructions, and FAQs

The Smoking Cessation Medication Prescribing Chart is designed to assist clinicians in treating tobacco use by providing information on treatment regimens, including suggested doses, precautions, contraindications and potential adverse effects for first-line smoking cessation medications. It also includes brief instructions for each medication and responses to frequently asked questions.

Click here to download a copy. 

Mount Sinai Achieves Bronze Star Status

Mount Sinai Hospital was recently awarded Bronze Star status from the New York City Health Department for demonstrating excellence related to their environmental policies and employee tobacco cessation programs. This exciting achievement displays Mount Sinai’s strong commitment to not only the wellness of their employees, but to creating a healthy hospital environment for patients and visitors, too. Mount Sinai achieved this recognition by completing an environmental assessment to ensure that adequate signage was in place and their tobacco-free campus policy, which now includes e-cigarettes, was being enforced.  Mount Sinai also upgraded their employee cessation services, now offering free onsite smoking cessation counseling services, and offsite cessation services through St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital, one of the hospitals in their network.

This is the 12th hospital to achieve Bronze Star status since the campaign’s inception.  The Health Department encourages all New York City hospitals to become members.  If your hospital has not yet joined and you would like more information, please contact us today.

 Congratulations, Mount Sinai, on achieving your Bronze Star!

Update Your Policy to Include Electronic Cigarettes

Recently, the Smoke-Free Air Act (SFAA) of New York City was amended to include a ban on electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) in all locations where smoking is prohibited, including all enclosed areas and on hospital grounds. This new law goes into effect on April 29, 2014. Please update your tobacco policy to reflect the e-cigarette ban.

Contact us if you would like to receive sample policy language, or if you have any questions about how to incorporate this new law into your policy.