Latest posts by Lindsey Stroud (see all)
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- How Government E-Cigarette Restrictions Are Increasing Youth Tobacco Use - April 11, 2019
The journal Addiction published a study in late June, finding the use of electronic cigarettes and vaporized nicotine products (VNPs) have helped 15 million smokers quit smoking tobacco cigarettes and/or cut back, in the European Union (E.U.). Using data from the 2014 Eurobarometer survey, which recorded responses of 27,460 participants, the study concluded that 48.5 million E.U. citizens had tried e-cigarettes and 7.5 million were currently vapers. Of the group reporting regular e-cigarette usage, “35 percent reported that e-cigarettes helped them quit smoking, while 32 percent said they were smoking less thanks to e-cigarettes.”
This research comes on the heels of a study published by the British Medical Journal earlier in June, that measured the “effectiveness and safety of electronic cigarettes at 24 months” using data from respondents that used e-cigarettes and VNPs to quit smoking and those that remained on traditional tobacco cigarettes. The study concluded that 61 percent of respondents had remained “abstinent from tobacco” and that only 23.1 percent of tobacco users reported abstinence.
The study by Addiction is only the latest bit of research concerning the health implications of electronic cigarettes and VNPs. After U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced in May to regulate electronic cigarettes as tobacco products, more studies have been finding greater evidence that e-cigarettes and VNPs may actually save more lives than endanger, and help ease the health burdens that are associated with tobacco.
Prior to the FDA’s ruling, there had been scant evidence, but there was evidence that indicated health benefits. Public Health England published a study in 2015 that found e-cigarettes being “95% less harmful … than normal cigarettes”. In April 2016, the Tobacco Advisory Group of the Royal College of Physicians published Nicotine without Smoke: Tobacco Harm Reduction and concluded that e-cigarettes produced a “relatively high quit rate” and furthered the health risks of e-cigarettes as “unlikely to exceed 5% of those associated with smoke tobacco products.”
It is now time that the FDA reconsider the position to regulate e-cigarettes and VNPs as tobacco products. This new industry could save Medicaid billions according the advocacy group State Budget Solutions. The FDA needs to reign in their influence, as they are doing a disservice to their mission statement by not speeding up “innovations that make medicines more effective, safer, and more affordable,” but hindering it, in the area of tobacco harm reduction.
Check out our E-cigarettes ideas page for more information.