University of Pennsylvania Health to Stop Hiring Smokers
Under the new policy, job applicants must be tobacco-free for six months and any new employees caught falsifying information about their tobacco use are subject to termination. This includes employed physicians, according to the report.
Current employees are grandfathered under the new policy, but they already pay higher premiums for their healthcare benefits if they use tobacco and do not participate in the system's complimentary cessation programs.
"Employees who smoke cost, on average, $3,391 more a year for healthcare," UPHS said in a statement. "In addition, smoke breaks during work may be disruptive and subject patients/colleagues to the unpleasant smell of smoke on employees' scrubs and clothing."
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