PITTSFIELD — Sebasticook Valley Health recently received a gold level award for meeting all the standards around creating a tobacco-free environment and supporting tobacco-free lifestyles by the Maine Tobacco Free Hospital Network. Thirty-one Maine hospitals were also honored during the event, which was held at the Maine Hospital Association in March.

“SVH is committed to creating a tobacco-free environment for our employees and patients,” said SVH acting CEO, Terri Vieira. “Tobacco use continues to be the leading cause of preventable disease and death, as well as a major contributor to health care costs. By providing our employees with resources to lead healthy lives at home and at work directly affects our insurance costs and enhances our ability to efficiently perform our work.”

Vieira said Karen Hawkes, SVH director of Community Health and Education, has led the effort at SVH to support a tobacco-free environment through comprehensive policies, education, social norm change and treatment support.

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