Baptist Health Corbin instituted a ban on the use of tobacco products in 2011, but hospital officials say it will be more strictly enforced.
Hospital officials said smoking and the use of all tobacco products, including vaping, is prohibited everywhere on the campus, and the outpatient diagnostic, urology and GI, human resources, and Baptist Worx buildings off of U.S. 25W.
“There are no designated smoking areas on any Baptist Health campus including personal vehicles,” officials stated. “If caught, violators could face a misdemeanor charge and a fine of up to $150 according to the Corbin City Ordinance.”
Hospital management and security will be enforcing the ban, asking anyone they find violating the ban to discontinue using the tobacco product.
“It is going to be a learning curve,” said Debbie Hardin, Marketing and Public Relations Director at the hospital.
As part of the admitting process, patients will be advised that tobacco use is prohibited on campus.
Patients who are admitted and then leave inpatient units without authorization may be discharged.
“Patients will be informed of this consequence should they choose to leave a unit, and the discharge may be initiated,” officials stated.
Hospital officials noted the policy applies to employees as well.
“Violation of this policy by employees will result in disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment,” officials stated. “Violations of the policy by members of the medical staff will be referred to the Chief Medical Officers.”
The hospital is offering a number of resources to help patients stop using tobacco products, including a free smoking cessation clinic, and financial assistance with medication to help the process.
More information is available by calling 526-4647.
In addition, the hospital will be selling boxes of Nicotine gum at the pharmacy and gift shop.
“We are selling the gum at cost,” Hardin said.
While hospital employees and security staff will be leading the effort, Hardin said Corbin Police have been notified of the effort.
“We don’t want to have to resort to that, but Corbin Police said they would come up and help if someone becomes belligerent with the employees,” Hardin said.