Salem Health’s smoke-free boundaries will become easier to understand

New smoke-free boundaries on Salem Health’s main campus will soon include city sidewalks and landscape strips next to Salem Health’s property, thanks to a recent city ordinance change.

Salem Health became smoke-free in 2005. But the mix of city-owned and privately owned sidewalks within the hospital campus caused confusion about the extent of its smoke-free boundaries.

“Salem Health is committed to improving the health of the community and supporting actions that improve health,” says Cheryl Wolfe, Salem Health’s president and chief executive officer. “Allowing smoking on walkways that bisect and surround the campus mutes our effort to both protect medically at-risk patients and encourage a healthy lifestyle.”

In Dec. 2015, Salem Health applied under Salem Revised Code Chapter 45 to include city sidewalks and landscape strips adjacent to its main Salem campus into Salem Health’s smoke-free boundaries.

As stated in the code, chapter 45 is “intended to protect public health, safety and welfare by reducing unwanted and unwelcome exposure to secondhand smoke.”

Salem Health will cover the city’s cost of installing new smoke-free signs along the city-owned sidewalks and property strips that have been approved, notifying the public that the sidewalk is a smoke-free area. The signs will help people better understand where the smoke-free boundary begins and ends.

People considering quitting smoking are invited to take the American Lung Association’s Freedom from Smoking® class at Salem Health’s Community Health Education Center. The seven-week course helps smokers recognize the situations that trigger their desire to smoke and gives them strategies to permanently overcome the urge. The cost of the program is covered by most insurances. Register online at or call 503-814-CHEC (2432).

Salem Health — an OHSU Partner — offers exceptional care to people in and around Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley. It is comprised of hospitals in Salem and Dallas, a medical group of primary and specialty care providers, plus other affiliated services. For the second consecutive year, the hospital in Salem received the prestigious 2016 Truven Health 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals—placing it among the nation’s highest performing hospitals. “Like” us on; follow us on Twitter: @salemhealth; and view us at