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Gerry Stimson - Nicotine Science and Policy

Gerry Stimson is Director of Knowledge-Action-Change, holds an Emeritus Chair at Imperial College and is Visiting Professor at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He has advised the UK Government, World Health Organization, UNAIDS, UNODC, World Bank and others on issues relating to drugs and addiction. He was a member of the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence working group that recently prepared guidelines on tobacco harm reduction. He has no competing interests.

Statement on today´s publication of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Report on e-cigarettes

Gerry Stimson* | 26 August 2014

WHO’s mission is to save lives and prevent disease but once again it is exaggerating the risks of e-cigarettes, while downplaying the huge potential of these non-combustible low risk nicotine products to end the epidemic of tobacco related disease. WHO claims e-cigarettes are a threat to public health, but this statement has no evidence to support it, and ignores the large number of people who are using them to cut down or quit smoking completely

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New estimates double size of US e-cigarette market; increasing importance of refillable and modified devices.

Gerry Stimson 29 | March 2014

The fast moving world of e-cigarettes means that it is hard to track the dynamics of this changing scene. There is a lack of good information on the size of the vaping population, trends in the sales of e-cigarettes, and what devices vapers are using. Academic and survey research on the size and characteristics of the vaping population is still minimal, and a picture of what is happening needs to be pieced together from various sources of information including sales and market data.

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UK Public Health Doctors and e-cigarettes – why this matters

Gerry Stimson and Paddy Costall | 19 January 2014

We struggle to understand why so many public health colleagues are anti-pathetic to electronic cigarettes. The uptake of e-cigarettes has been a consumer-led public health revolution. At no cost to the NHS, and without government or public health support and promotion, thousands of people have found that e-cigarettes help them switch from smoking. Using e-cigarettes is a classic harm reduction approach – a safer product and delivery device for those who do not want to give up nicotine. It fits two public health principles – the first is to reduce harms to populations and the second is to engage and work with populations in their endeavour to lead healthier lives.

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European Tobacco Products Directive – Last minute attempt by the European Commission to introduce medicines regulation in all but name

Gerry Stimson | 25 November 2013

The European Parliament voted on October 8th voted to reject medicines regulation for e-cigarettes. Instead it passed Amendment 170 which sought to regulate e-cigarettes as consumer products. The main elements of this amendment were that medicines legislation would apply to products where a health claim is made i.e. that the product can be used for treating or preventing disease.

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European Parliament votes against proposal to regulate e-cigarettes as medicines

Gerry Stimson | 13 October 2013

As the Telegraph put it, ‘The decision by MEPs to reject a European Commission proposal to treat electronic cigarettes as medicinal products was as sensible as it was unexpected’.


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Public health call for European ban on snus to be lifted

Gerry Stimson | 29 September 2013

What were they thinking of at the European Commission when they proposed continuing with the ban on snus? The ban, and the proposal to control e-cigarettes as medicines, ranks as public health folly of the highest order.


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Costs and burdens of medicines regulation for e-cigarettes

Gerry Stimson | 21 September 2013

New report by Clive Bates and Gerry Stimson on the Costs and burdens of medicines regulation for e-cigarettes.
What were the MHRA, the Department of Health, and their health advisers thinking when they embarked on the e-cigarettes as medicines route? The more you analyse it, the more medicines regulation appears to lead to a monstrous perversion of public health objectives.

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Letter to MEPs on the EU Parliament ENVI Committee

 Gerry Stimson | 23 May 2013

In a letter to MEPs on the EU Parliament ENVI Committee, regarding the proposed regulation of electronic cigarettes in the draft Tobacco Products Directive, Professor Gerry Stimson makes the case for ‘twin-track’ regulation

April 22, 2013

Dear Member,

I am writing to you concerning the draft Tobacco Products Directive and in particular Article 18 which seeks to regulate nicotine containing products (NCP) - including electronic cigarettes - as medicinal products.

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