In the survey conducted prior to implementation of the policy, both employees and patients were asked to what extent the smoke of others bothered them within the confines of the medical institution. The majority of employees indicated that the smoke of others bothered them. Of these individuals, 35 percent indicated that the smoke of coworkers affected them a great deal; 22 percent responded that the smoke of others did not bother them. Of those who indicated that the smoke of others had an adverse effect, 66 percent were smokers. Patient response rates were nearly identical to the employee response rates (Fig 1). In this regard, the most offensive effects were smell, eye irritation, and provocation of sinus problems, cough, and headache. flovent inhaler
One major consequence of interest was the possible change in the pattern of smoking while employees were at work. In both surveys, six and 12 months after implementation of the policy, approximately one fourth of smokers indicated that they no longer smoked cigarettes at work. However, approximately 40 percent of smokers indicated at both the six- and 12-month surveys that their cigarette consumption remained unchanged after leaving the medical facility at the end of a workday. In this regard, 23 percent of employees who smoked reported smoking less, but 35 percent smoked more after work hours since the policy went into effect. Those who indicated that they smoked more were in the 35- to 44-year-old age group, had smoked for ten or more years, and were women.
Figure 1. Employee and patient attitude toward policy (percent agreeing with policy).
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