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The newspaper of The Johns Hopkins University March 12, 2007 | Vol. 36 No. 25
JHM trustees support statewide smoking ban

Board issues resolution showing its commitment to public health of citizens

By Gary Stephenson
Johns Hopkins Medicine

The governing board of Johns Hopkins Medicine on March 5 unanimously voted to throw its support behind Maryland legislators' efforts to ban smoking in all indoor public spaces in the state.

A resolution passed at a regular meeting of the Johns Hopkins Medicine board of trustees stated that the board "confirms and states its commitment to the public health of the citizens of Maryland and requests that the Maryland General Assembly swiftly pass legislation banning smoking in all indoor public spaces in the State of Maryland."

"Saving lives and restoring health is what Johns Hopkins Medicine is all about," said C. Michael Armstrong, chairman of the board. "Banning smoking in public places would accomplish that goal and reduce the number of people who die as a result of this potentially lethal habit each year."

"The health hazards of smoking are grounded in solid scientific evidence and beyond dispute," said Edward D. Miller, CEO of Johns Hopkins Medicine and dean of the School of Medicine. "As a Baltimore institution with a world-renowned medical school, school of public health, hospital and research facilities, Hopkins has an obligation to speak out on an issue that poses an imminent health danger not only for smokers but for the innocent bystanders exposed to this smoke."

Johns Hopkins Medicine — with a total of 26,676 employees, including a medical staff of 4,797 and 4,613 registered nurses — is a collaboration that unites the faculty physicians and scientists of The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine with the organizations, health professionals and facilities of the Johns Hopkins Health System. Its board includes trustees of both the health system and the university.

Currently, smoking in public places is against the law in Baltimore City and five Maryland counties, 14 states, 250 local jurisdictions outside Maryland and eight countries. (The Baltimore City Council passed its no-smoking ban on Feb. 26, and the law is set to take effect Jan. 1, 2008.)

Two recent studies conducted by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health conclude that people breathing secondhand smoke indoors face serious health risks. For details of the research on the dangers and prevalence of secondhand smoke in Maryland, go to


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