Communiqué #35

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NRI Survey Shows Positive Trend for Tobacco-Free Psychiatric Hospitals


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NRINRI Survey Shows Positive Trend for Tobacco-Free Psychiatric Hospitals


Smoking Policies and Practices in State Psychiatric Facilities: Survey Results from 2011


smoking prohibitedSince 2006, the National Research Institute (NRI), the research arm of the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors (NASMHPD) has been surveying state psychiatric facilities on their smoking policies and practices. In 2005, NRI performed the analysis of the initial environmental scan conducted by NASMHPD to develop a baseline of information. At that time, there was a 55% response rate and only 20% of facilities indicated that they prohibited smoking.


In 2006, NRI developed a refined survey with more variables, such as developing operational definitions of smoking and non-smoking; environmental and safety issues; staff training; and treatment options. Facilities self-identified whether they prohibit or allow smoking by the version of the survey they completed. The 2006 survey had an 82% response rate and 41% of facilities indicated that they prohibit smoking. In 2008, NRI refined the 2006 survey to provide a hierarchy of policy statements in order to refine and categorize facilities as either "prohibiting" or "allowing" smoking and adding questions to focus on treatment and continuity of care. The 2008 survey had a 75% response rate and 49% of facilities were categorized as prohibiting smoking. The multi-year survey results indicate a clear movement toward facilities prohibiting smoking.


In 2011, 79% of the facilities were categorized as prohibiting smoking (n=131), the vast majority of which (95%) are totally smoke-free campuses. For those facilities categorized as allowing smoking (n=34), 3% allow smoking inside the facility in designated smoking areas, 24% allow smoking outdoors, and 74% allow smoking outdoors only in designated areas. Three percent (3%) of the facilities that prohibit smoking and 41% of facilities that allow smoking also allow the use of smokeless tobacco products. None of the facilities that prohibit smoking and 21% of facilities that allow smoking also permits the sale of tobacco products on facility premises.

Among facilities that allow smoking, 50% use escorts to smoking areas (n=17) and 88% of these facilities also have established smoking times, while the remaining facilities rely on patient privileges and designated smoking areas. Follow this link to the full report:


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Longtime Cessation Champion

Congratulations to our longtime champion and friend Carol Southard on winning the American Lung Association and Koop Foundation Unsung Heroes in Tobacco Control award! We are so pleased she has been recognized the work she does in helping smokers quit.



  WNTD 2012 logo

World No Tobacco Day 2012

Thursday May 31st is World No Tobacco Day (WNTD). 

The World Health Organization (WHO) selected "Tobacco Industry Interference" as this year's theme.  Follow this link for more information:





Legacy WebcastLegacy logo

Also on World No Tobacco Day, Legacy is sponsoring a live webcast, "A Hidden Epidemic: Tobacco Use and Mental Illness" as part of Kenneth E. Warner Lecture Series at Legacy. The webcast will be on May 31, 2012 from 12:30 to 2:00 pm, ET. Register here:


May is Mental Health Awareness Month, and the Legacy special Warner Series Lecture will address a devastating trend in public health. Research shows that people with mental illness smoke at rates nearly twice as high as the general population (41% vs. 22.5%, respectively) and nearly half of the cigarettes smoked in the United States are consumed by people with co-occurring psychiatric or addictive disorders. Please join the Legacy Foundation on World No Tobacco Day for a live-webcasted panel discussion addressing how public health experts can work with the mental health system to curb tobacco use among this population.


The moderator is Judith J. Prochaska, PhD, MPH, Associate Professor in Residence, University of California, San Francisco. The panelists are Chad Morris, PhD, Associate Professor and Director, Behavioral Health & Wellness Program, University of Colorado, Anschutz Medical Campus, Department of Psychiatry, Jill M. Williams, MD, Director of the Division of Addiction Psychiatry at the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Department of Psychiatry, and Marie Verna, Program Support Coordinator, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, University Behavioral HealthCare and a person managing mental illness.



SCLC Webinars

SCLC now offers 1.5 CME/CEU credits at cost ($25) for webinar attendees. Stay tuned for announcements on upcoming topics and dates. For more information visit: 




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Resource Highlights 


quite now

1-800-QUIT-NOW wallet card

Available through the Smoking Cessation Leadership Center, the card is similar in size and feel to a credit card and offers motivational language urging smokers to call the nation's free, effective, tobacco cessation counseling lines.


A New Way to Think About Quitting
About re-learning life without cigarettes, the free
Become an EX plan is based on personal experiences from ex-smokers, as well as the latest scientific research from the experts at Mayo Clinic.

RWJF Tobacco Map

For the first time, policymakers and advocates have access to a nationwide picture of continuing state efforts on key tobacco control policies. The RWJF Tobacco Map uses data from the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and the Americans for Non-Smokers' Rights and is updated as new information becomes available.


Have some news you would like to share?  Send us your updates.


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Smoking Cessation Leadership Center   University of California, San Francisco

Please continue to send us your updates (i.e. newsletter articles, provider trainings, presentations, etc.)
We will collect all the information, share with all partners, and post updates on the SCLC website.

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Questions or comments on the Communiqué:
Contact Margaret Meriwether