Memo from Kathe Cronin, VP Human Resources and Sabrina Williams, Director HR
On April 16, 2012, we launched an initiative to make Tufts University’s Boston Campus Tobacco Free. Our campaign included smoking cessation classes, permanent silver signage in our entry ways and near the loading docks advising no smoking within 25 feet, free standing signage and posters promising “Soon we will all have more breathing room”, offers of free nicotine patches to assist anyone trying to quit and most recently on our tobacco free webpage we displayed two videotaped testimonials from Tufts employees who had successfully given up smoking.
Our kickoff event in partnership with Tufts Medical Center, was well attended, Eric Beyer, President and CEO, Tufts Medical Center, Dr. Harris Berman, Dean, Tufts University Medical School, Dr. Barbara Ferrer, Director of the Boston Public Health Commission, a representative from the Boston Asian Youth Essential Service and May Chin, RN, Project Director, pediatric Asthma Prevention and Management Initiative and former smoker. During the event we distributed Aluminum Water Bottles, with the Tufts Tobacco Free Logo, in exchange for email addresses of anyone who would like to quit smoking. We received three pages of email addresses.
We have seen a tremendous amount of support from our Staff, Faculty, and Students to ensure no one smokes within 25 feet of any University building entrance. Our goal is to continue to improve the health of our community, create a culture of support for employees and students who would like to stop using tobacco products, and reduce involuntary exposure to secondhand smoke. Over the past six months we had asked our providers to keep track of reimbursements and inquiries related to cessation related services and they have seen some movement, an increase of over 50 % during the period from April–August 2012 vs. October–March 2011. Although we are not able to track specifics due to HIPPA we are excited to report any increase in utilization rates.
We invite you to join us at the Open Enrollment Benefit Fair on Wednesday, October 31st, where we’ll have a wellness table along with our benefit providers to show you how to further your wellness goals.
Of course we did not do this alone, we would like to express our gratitude to our many supporters, colleagues and students, in particular, Sabrina Williams, Mark Gonthier, Marsha Semuels, Terese Daly, Maureen Lombard, Ken Goldsmith, Karen Kenney, Jenn Towers, Deputy Chief Linda O’Brien, Sgt. Bill Murphy, Barbara Rubel, Steve Nasson, Chris McColgan, McCall Allen, Janice De Vito and Stephanie Brue
- Contact your insurance planto find out what types of quit smoking medications and counseling are covered
- Call all Massachusetts Smokers’ Helpline 1-800-784-8669 (1-800-Quit-Now)
- free one-on-one support over the telephone
- until May 31, a free supply of nicotine patches, which must be sent to a Boston Address
- Find other resources and support groups in Massachusetts at
- Other toll-free hotlines: