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A Tobacco-Free Environment for Sun Country Regional Health Authority

Sun Country Regional Health Authority (SCRHA) will enforce a new Tobacco-Free Environment Policy on May 1, 2007 which will include the grounds on which all of its facilities are located in southeast Saskatchewan.

A March 2006 policy declared all facilities and vehicles operated and funded by SCRHA to be smoke-free.

Officials at SCRHA are united over the Policy.

Cal Tant, President and Chief Executive Officer, says the new Policy covering the grounds is the logical next step.

"SCRHA takes a leadership role in health promotion and disease prevention. Our Policy on a smoke-free environment is consistent with our mandate to protect our staff and encourage healthy living among the public."

"The harmful health effects of tobacco use are well known," says Cal.

"Health Canada says exposure to second-hand smoke causes at least 1,000 deaths per year in Canada from lung cancer and heart disease alone. Workplace policies that discourage smoking also help both our employees and members of the public who want to quit," he says.

He said SCRHA is confident the no-smoking policy will assist us in recruiting new employees and retaining existing staff.

SCRHA Medical Health Officer Dr. Shauna Hudson says the new policy addresses further steps to reduce the harmful effects of tobacco use and protect SCHRA staff, residents, patients and visitors by promoting a healthy environment.

"It also ensures supports are in place to help people who want to quit smoking," she says.

The Chief of the Medical Staff at SCRHA, Dr. Vino Padayachee, adds that second-hand smoke is the single largest source of indoor air pollution and contains a mixture of nearly 4000 chemicals. "More than 50 of those are cancer-causing agents," he says.

Media: For more information, please call Cal Tant, President/CEO, 842-8737

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