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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

CentraCare care givers have been working around the clock for more than 20 months to care for you, your families and friends during COVID. We are committed to caring for every Minnesotan who needs us, and nothing will prevent us from doing so – even during these never-seen-before times.

The challenge of providing this level of care is that our hospital beds are often full. ERs in all of our hospitals are packed. And our clinical teams are exhausted. Early in the pandemic, our community stepped up in amazing ways to help us. We ask that you again join us in fighting this pandemic together.

How can you help?

  • Please get your COVID vaccines and booster shots. They are proven safe and effective in reducing COVID illness, keeping people out of the hospital, and preventing death.
  • If your situation is not an emergency, please use other care options, including:
  • If this is a medical emergency, call 9-1-1, or visit the ER.

Together, we can do this. Thank you for your support.

Ken Holmen, MD
President and CEO

New tobacco and e-cigarette regulations in Sartell are in effect

Published in Media Releases Author: CentraCare

On Nov. 1, the City of Sartell approved a ban, effective immediately, which prohibits the use of any tobacco and e-cigarette products on any city-owned property, including parks, trails, greenways, indoor and outdoor park shelters and other outdoor spaces. Sartell already had a no smoking policy in place since 2002, but wording was amended to include e-cigarettes and to be effective at all times — not just during youth activities.

This policy change came the same day the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) announced the results of its 2016 Minnesota Student Survey, showing youth smoking hitting historic lows. Results showed that traditional cigarette smoking among both 11th and 9th grade students fell by nearly one third since the survey was last conducted in 2013. The survey also found declines in cigar product and smokeless tobacco use for this same age group.

“While this data is reason to celebrate,” said Meghan Bown, Coordinator of Crave the Change, “we still have work to do. The study also showed e-cigarette use is now more than double that of cigarette use among students.”

She noted products like e-cigarettes, e-hookahs and vape pens typically contain liquid forms of nicotine and are unregulated. According to the MDH, no amount of nicotine is safe for youth. It is highly addictive and may harm adolescent brain development. Damaging long-term effects may have implications for learning, memory, attention, behavior problems and future addiction.

“Together, we can support efforts proven to prevent teens from using tobacco products, including keeping the price of tobacco high, raising the legal age to purchase tobacco and restricting the sale of flavored cigars, chew and e-cigarettes that appeal to kids,” said Bown.

About Crave the Change

Crave the Change is an initiative of CentraCare Health that seeks to create healthy, tobacco-free communities for the next generation. Learn more about Crave the Change.