Employees of Rush and Anderson hospitals have been informed that both will soon be smoke-free and tobacco-free, and that smoking current areas will go away.
Hospital officials say they understand this is going to be very difficult for the many smokers employed at the hospitals, so they are going to do their best to wean the smokers off tobacco products.
"In conjunction with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Mississippi, they are going to help us by covering the cost of prescription medications, if that is the route an employee wants to take," said Katie Chamblee of Anderson Hospital.
"I hope it says that we are concerned about your health," said Tim Moore of Rush Hospital. "We want to be a role model so that when you come to the hospital, you don't see smoking and things like that taking place. "
Going smoke-free is a common practice for hospitals. Riley Hospital in Meridian has already taken this step.
The schedule for both hospitals to stop the use of all tobacco products is June 1.
The smoking areas at Rush and Anderson will be shut down, and then the campuses will be totally smoke-free come Sept. 1.
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