MaineHealth Hospitals Honored for Tobacco Prevention Efforts

November 25, 2019
The MaineHealth Center for Tobacco Independence’s Breathe Easy initiative has awarded all MaineHealth hospitals in the state with platinum or gold level status through its 2019 Gold Star Standards of Excellence Program. This year, 33 Maine hospitals and four Gold Star Champions were celebrated for achievements in advancing their campus smoke and tobacco-free policies as well as promoting tobacco-free lifestyles.

“Hospitals serve as examples for health and wellness in their communities. Having strong policies and procedures addressing tobacco use and exposure sends an important message,” said Kristen McAuley, tobacco prevention services director for the MaineHealth Center for Tobacco Independence. “Tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable disease and death; we applaud these 33 Maine hospitals for their ongoing efforts to meet the Gold Star Standards of Excellence.”

All Maine hospitals were encouraged to apply for 2019 recognition. Participating organizations that met at least seven of ten standards were recognized with a plaque. Award levels are based on best practice criteria such as a smoke and tobacco-free campus policy, annual screening for tobacco use, referral to tobacco treatment and supporting employee education related to tobacco treatment. In 2019, all participating hospitals were recognized at the silver, gold and platinum levels. To meet the platinum level, hospitals must meet all ten Gold Star Standards and include specific policy language and strategies for five additional requirements.

Among the individual awards, Barbara Crowley of Coastal Healthcare Alliance, Dr. Dena Whitesell of Maine Medical Center and Dr. Timothy Goltz of LincolnHealth were recognized as Gold Star Champions for demonstrating strong leadership and advocacy for tobacco-free environments and resources.

The following MaineHealth hospitals and individuals were recognized in 2019:

Platinum Level:

Franklin Memorial Hospital
Maine Medical Center
MaineGeneral Medical Center (affiliate)
Mid Coast Hospital (affiliate)
New England Rehabilitation Hospital of Portland (affiliate)
Pen Bay Medical Center
Southern Maine Health Care
Spring Harbor Hospital
St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center (affiliate)
Waldo County General Hospital

Gold Level:
Stephens Memorial Hospital

Gold Star Champion Award:
Barbara Crowley, Coastal Healthcare Alliance
Dr. Dena Whitesell, Maine Medical Center
Dr. Timothy Goltz, LincolnHealth

For more information about the Gold Star Standards of Excellence, visit