Smoking Bans

Monday, May 09, 2011
On my way to work each day, I pass several billboards that have photos of bar or casino workers and the caption, “we deserve a smoke-free workplace too.” We have a quirky law in our state that forbids smoking in restaurants but allows smoking in bars and casinos. Federal regulation of smoking in public is lacking and state laws vary.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the number of states with comprehensive indoor smoking bans rose from 0 in the year 2000 to 25 in 2010. Almost half of the people in the US are covered by comprehensive state or local indoor smoking bans, and another 10 states have laws that ban smoking in workplaces, bars or restaurants, but not in all three venues. Some states have less restrictive laws (e.g. requiring smoking areas with separate ventilation). Only seven states have no indoor smoking restrictions, although some of their cities in these states do: Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas, West Virginia and Wyoming.

By 2020, the CDC estimates that every state may have bans on smoking in restaurants, bars and the workplace, based on the current pace of adopting anti-smoking laws. This is good news for oncology healthcare providers like me, and I would expect that this is good news for anyone working in cardiology, pulmonology, public health, etc. Hopefully, we’ll one day have a federal smoking ban in place for restaurants, bars, casinos, and the workplace.

Lisa Schulmeister, RN, MN, APRN-BC, OCN, FAAN
Blog Info
Nurses' Blogs presents healthcare issues and trends from a nursing practice point of view.
Author Bio
Lisa Schulmeister, RN, MN, APRN-BC, OCN, FAAN, is the Editor-in-Chief for OncLive Nursing. She is an oncology nursing consultant and adjunct assistant professor of nursing at Louisiana State Health Sciences Center in New Orleans, LA. She provides continuing nursing education to nurses across the Unites States, is active in several professional nursing organizations, and is intrigued by the many ways nurses use technology to communicate.
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