What is the smoking ordinance?
It's a New Durham County Board of Health Rule Adopted by Ordinance of Durham County Board of Commissioners which increases the number of smoke-free areas including:
- City of Durham grounds
- City of Durham Parks System including playgrounds and athletic fields
- City and County Bus Stops (including a radius of 100 ft. around the bus stop excluding any private property that may fall in that radius)
- Durham County grounds
- Durham County Trails and Parks
- Durham Station Transportation Center (except as specifically designated)
- Durham Train Station (except as specially designated)
- Child Care Facilities
- Hospital Grounds
- Sidewalks that are owned, leased, maintained or occupied by the City or County of Durham and abut the grounds of Durham County, Durham City, any public schools or hospitals
When does it go into effect?
August 1, 2012.
How does it impact Duke Health's patients, visitors and employees?
Smoking at hospital entrances or surrounding sidewalks will be prohibited.
Where can people smoke when they are at Duke University Hospital, Duke Regional Hospital or Duke Raleigh Hospital?
All three DUHS hospitals are tobacco-free campuses and therefore, do not have designated smoking areas. The ordinance orders that smokers at DUH or DRH will have to be away from any DUHS or City/County property which means smokers will have to walk beyond the sidewalks in order to smoke. The ordinance does not apply to Wake County and therefore, non-Duke property around Duke Raleigh Hospital is not affected.
What about Duke clinics and administrative offices?
The ordinance only applies to hospital grounds and surrounding sidewalks. But as a reminder, all Duke Health facilities including clinics, outpatient facilities and administrative offices are covered by the tobacco-free policy which went into effect in 2007.
How will the ordinance be enforced?
Rather than an enforcement process, it should be seen as an "information process." Many patients, visitors and employees will not be aware of the smoking ordinance and all of us can help by informing community members of this change. Small, business-sized cards, which contain information about the ordinance and smoking cessation resources, will be available from your Human Resources representative. These cards can be distributed and used as an awareness tool.
What resources are available to quit smoking?
For Duke employees, LIVE FOR LIFE is an employee health promotion program which includes smoking cessation programs. To reach LIVE FOR LIFE call (919) 684-3136 or visit the LIVE FOR LIFE Tobacco Free website.
Where can I learn more about the ordinance?
Contact the Durham County Health Department at (919) 560-7600.
How is this different from the current Duke Health Tobacco Free policy?
The ordinance is separate from Duke Health's policy. All Duke Health campuses went tobacco free in 2007 and that policy remains in effect. The ordinance extends the boundaries where smoking is prohibited, specifically, sidewalks surrounding Durham County/City hospitals. Therefore, patients, visitors and employees at Duke University Hospital and Duke Regional Hospital will have to walk further away, beyond sidewalks, in order to smoke.