William Beaumont Health System and the Dental Clinics are slated to become tobacco-free beginning May 8.
The ban prohibits all active-duty Soldiers, staff, patients and visitors from using any tobacco product (including cigarettes, cigars, pipes, smokeless tobacco and electronic cigarettes) while on William Beaumont Army Medical Center (WBAMC) grounds or any outlying medical or dental clinic throughout Fort Bliss.
“Providing a tobacco-free campus demonstrates our dedication and commitment to the health and wellness of our Soldiers, staff, patients and families,” said Col. John A. Smyrski III, commander, WBAMC.
The policy will not force tobacco users to quit using tobacco, but will encourage healthier choices.
WBAMC’s goal is to set the example by promoting healthy lifestyles and behaviors that contribute to overall better health in the Fort Bliss and El Paso communities.
The Army Medicine 2020 Campaign Plan sparked the ban, changing from a healthcare system to a system for health.
“We are promoting a safe environment of care to fortify the system for health in our community,” said Smyrski.
In accordance with Army Regulation 600-63, use of tobacco will no longer be authorized in any MEDCOM-operated building, including medical, dental and veterinary clinics; administrative buildings; roadways, sidewalks, parking lots and grounds external and adjacent to WBAMC property.
The Tobacco Free Campus policy will not apply to Bargaining Unit Employees pending the completion of negotiations in accordance with the collective bargaining agreement and 5 USC 7116(a)(5).
Author: Marcy Sanchez – William Beaumont Army Medical Center Public Affairs Office