Smoke-free laws improve health: study

Columbus, OH – Ohio’s statewide smoke-free law has had a positive impact on residents’ health, according to five reports (.pdf file) released Sept. 1 by the Ohio Department of Health.

The rate of emergency department and urgent care center visits with heart attack complaints dropped 26 percent after enforcement of the statewide smoke-free legislation began in 2007, and hospital discharge rates indicate a sharp decrease in heart attacks across the state.

Researchers determined the Smoke-Free Workplace Act had no economic impact on bars and restaurants in Ohio. A survey of residents found that 73 percent support the smoke-free legislation.

Ohio was the 12th state to ban smoking in public places when the law was passed in November 2006.

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