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South Africans will soon pay more for “novel” tobacco and nicotine products. This follows last month’s budget speech in which the finance minister announced that: “In line with department of health policy, we will start taxing heated tobacco products (HTPs), for example, hubbly-bubbly. The rate will be set at 75% of the rate of cigarettes. Electronic-cigarettes, or so-called vapes, will be taxed from 2021.”

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s2smodern

The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed a landmark flavored tobacco ban.

Despite the Trump administration wisely announcing its opposition to the bill, the “Protecting American Lungs and Reversing the Youth Tobacco Epidemic Act of 2020” is a legislative proposal that will drastically harm an entire industry and its consumers.

Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) should reconsider his position on e-cigarettes by recognizing that a total ban could open a Pandora’s box that can’t be contained by policymaking. Under the bill, most flavored tobacco and recreational nicotine products would be banned. This includes menthol flavoring.

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VAPING is likely to be diverting young people from smoking, rather than being a gateway to the deadly habit, according to new research. There is also scant evidence of a so-called “youth vaping epidemic”.

These were the findings in a new review published [...] by Australian academics Colin Mendelsohn and Wayne Hall.

The research debunks one of the major arguments used to justify Australia's ban on nicotine vaping products: that vaping is a gateway to regular smoking for young people who would otherwise not have smoked cigarettes

Although teen vaping is associated with later trying smoking, this does not prove that vaping has CAUSED the smoking.

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Let’s be perfectly clear: There’s no such thing as harmless tobacco. 

All tobacco products have lasting health consequences—from mouth and throat cancers and lung disease to cardiac health and even stroke—and the earlier in life a person begins using tobacco, the more dangerous those consequences can be. To truly put a stop to the youth tobacco epidemic in our country, all flavored tobacco products, which target young people, must be eliminated. 

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s2smodern

The WHO has been overtly against vaping products. Infact last September, two leaked papers from the WHO’s Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office (EMRO), had suggested that the organization was striving to have vaping products regulated in the same way their combustible counterparts.

Meanwhile, WHO representative Dr. Ranti Fayokun, a scientist in the National Capacity-Tobacco Control Prevention of Noncommunicable Diseases, has acknowledged the relative safety of the products, during a hearing on vaping regulation conducted by the House of Representatives in the Philippines.

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[...] the American Consumer Institute released a report – “Are E-Cigarette Regulations Jeopardizing the Public Health?” – that reviews the evidence from policy and health studies, as well as the impact of recent legislative and regulatory decisions to curtail, ban and tax e-cigarette products.

In merely a decade, e-cigarettes have gone from fringe novelties to mainstream products used by millions of Americans. In response to rising teen use and a rash of vaping deaths, many policymakers have been openly hostile to e-cigarettes, casting them as dangerous gateways to tobacco smoking, [...]

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Frost & Sullivan’s latest thought leadership white paper, Harm Reduction in an Australian Context, highlights the history of harm reduction and its application across various behaviours and products, including tobacco. The use of harm reduction principles in public health policy in Australia is also discussed, along with the current status of tobacco harm reduction policies. "Smoke-free nicotine products (SFNPs) can potentially have a significant impact in areas where smoking rates are relatively high and there is a lack of resources to support existing smokers, such as the Northern Territory,” explained Mark Dougan, [...]

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s2smodern

Most people who smoke want to quit – so much so, in fact, that many smokers actually say they support cigarette taxes. If you can’t quit smoking for your health, maybe you’ll do it for your wallet.

And countless studies show that it works. Heftier tobacco taxes drive down usage, especially among kids. So even in overtaxed New Jersey, Gov. Phil Murphy’s proposal to hike the cigarette tax, for the first time in more than a decade, is worth a serious look.

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According to a recent poll commissioned by Heart & Stroke, 80 per cent of Canadians are concerned with how many young people are vaping, and 89 per cent want the government to take action before the end of the year.

“We are facing a youth vaping crisis in Canada,” Andrew Pipe, board chair for Heart & Stroke, said in a news release. “Industry has been targeting young people through aggressive marketing, enticing flavours, and attractive product design. One vape pod can deliver a phenomenal amount of nicotine--as much as an entire package of cigarettes,” he continued.

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Dr Ehsan Latif, vice-president for grant management and development at the Foundation for a Smoke-Free World, recently spoke to Asia Times about his work, and excerpts of that interview appear below. [...] In public health, we have a tendency to treat all smokers alike. Every smoker is an individual with their own needs and preferences. Every smoker that I have come across in both my professional and personal life has tried to quit, but as we all know, it’s not easy.

There are many studies on why some smokers fail to quit the habit while others are successful. [...]

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"Our data show that flavors aren't just popular with the youth, but with adults as well," said lead author Dr. Ping Du, associate professor of medicine and public health sciences. "Many of the participants in our study indicated that they used e-cigarettes as a means to quit smoking or avoid relapse, and these flavors may be part of the reason why they end up using e-cigarettes in the long term," she said. For the study, the researchers compared results of online surveys conducted among e-cigarette users between 2012 and 2014 and between 2017 and 2019. [...]

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Speaking at the seminar on new-generation tobacco management policy held by the Ministry of Health on March 5, Nguyen Tuan Lam, a representative of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Vietnam, said that electronic cigarettes, instead of acting as a tool to help smokers wean off combustible cigarettes, were encouraging youths to start smoking. Tran Thi Trang, deputy head of the Ministry of Health’s Legal Department, said that the department will propose the Government impose a ban on the sale, production and import of electronic cigarettes and heated tobacco products.

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In this study, the researchers combined evidence from 17 studies that had investigated e-cigarette use and subsequent smoking, where an odds ratio could be calculated, to explore whether e-cigarette use, compared to non-use, in young non-smokers is associated with subsequent cigarette use.

Jasmine Khouja [...] said: "Policymakers have used the findings of studies, including the studies we reviewed in this research, to support the heavy regulation of e-cigarettes, including restrictions on flavours and even total bans, but the evidence that e-cigarette use might cause young people to take up smoking is not as strong as it might appear."

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new study of vaping-related lung injuries in California reinforces the evidence implicating black-market cannabis products, even in states that have legalized the production and distribution of marijuana for recreational use. In a sample of 160 patients, just 9 percent reported vaping only nicotine—a claim that is doubtful in the absence of blood or urine testing. Just 1 percent of the patients who reported vaping THC identified a state-licensed retailer as the source of the products they used.

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Peter Paul Dator, president of a highly vocal vaping group in the region said that as early as 2015, Public Health England issued a report stating that e-cigarettes were at least 95 percent less harmful to humans than combustible tobacco.

This is because e-cigarettes, heat-not-burn tobacco products and snus deliver nicotine, a food-grade substance, without the process of combustion. Dator said the retraction of the study validated the position of the vaping groups. “We believe that any study should be based on sound methodologies, validated equipment, and internationally recognized practices. [...]

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s2smodern

Carlos Puig y David Sweanor comentan sobre los cigarrillos electrónicos y la alteración de las industrias de tabaqueras.

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It’s astonishing how wide the gap is between the public health position on vaping in England and that of the United States and Canada. One side values evidence and the other, emotion and hysteria. In this exclusive RegWatch interview with Linda Bauld, Professor of Public Health at the University of Edinburgh and co-author of PHE’s 2020 Evidence Update; we walk through the findings: youth vaping epidemic, vaping-related lung illness, perception of harm, risk of nicotine use, vaping and pregnancy…

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Smoking or vaping makes people more vulnerable to suffering severe illness once infected by coronavirus, a spokeswoman for New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Sunday. “If you are a smoker or a vaper that does make you more vulnerable,” de Blasio said, urging New Yorkers to seek help in quitting. “If you are a smoker or a vaper this is a very good time to stop that habit and we will help you.” De Blasio also said people over the age of 50 and with heart disease, lung disease, cancer, immune system vulnerability or diabetes face increased risks.

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A working theory links the harms of COVID-19 to the damage done to the lungs from smoking cigarettes. Michael Ryan, executive director of the WHO’s Health Emergencies Program, said on February 14 that higher rates of cigarette smoking are “an excellent hypothesis” for why men seem to be more heavily impacted by COVID-19 than women.

study published by the Chinese government on February 17 found that of 45,000  confirmed cases at the time, the gender split was roughly equal, but that the fatality rate then recorded was 2.8 percent for men, compared with 1.7 percent for women.

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The increased use of electronic cigarettes and vaping products has increased the need to better understand how and if addiction to these products is different than in traditional cigarettes. One way to objectively measure addictive potential is through changes in the brain, but researchers say a limited number of methods currently exist to deliver the vapor (called aerosol) during magnetic resonance imaging, commonly called MRI. [...] Andrea Hobkirk's prototype device is designed to do just that—delivering up to four different aerosols during MRI scanning and mimicking the everyday use of a vaping device.