Banning Tobacco May Cause Rehab Patients To Quit Programs Early

By Staff Writer

Most people are in favor of broader smoking bans, but instituting them at addiction rehab facilities may be a thorny issue, according to a new study from Ohio State University researchers, who found that such prohibitions may increase the number of individuals who leave treatment early.

Tobacco-free rehab centers are becoming increasingly common across the country, but there has previously been little evidence as to their effectiveness.

After studying one Ohio rehab facility that instituted a tobacco ban, the researchers found that the percentage of patients who completed the program decreased by 28 percent.

Despite this finding, it may still be worthwhile for rehab providers to consider banning cigarettes. The researchers said that many in the recovery community feel that treating a patient for tobacco use in addition to cocaine addiction and other dependencies would be too much for the patient. However, they said evidence suggests that treating the entire problem may be beneficial.

While such a move may lead to improvements in the health of those who successfully complete the program, the researchers concluded that it would require careful consideration on the part of individual addiction rehab facilities.