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Alberta has introduced new legislation on vaping that would include a ban on anyone under 18 from using e-cigarettes.

Health Minister Tyler Shandro says there is mounting evidence on the health risks of vaping and statistics show more young people in Alberta are indulging.

“Strong action needs to be taken to address significant increases in youth vaping,” Shandro said Tuesday prior to introducing Bill 19, the Tobacco and Smoking Reduction Amendment Act, in the house.

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The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has issued an advisory on Tuesday that warned people against believing in a non-peer-reviewed study from France that claimed smokers are less vulnerable to contracting Covid-19. The study came about 3 months ago. The Ministry in its advisory claimed that contrary to the study findings, smoking nicotine or tobacco products increases the risk and severity of respiratory infections including Covid-19. This is because the act of smoking involves contacting fingers with lips which increases the risk of the COVID transmission in the body.

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A new study shows that the entry of heated tobacco products (HTPs) triggered a remarkable reduction in combustible cigarettes sales in Japan. "The decline in smoking rates among adults in Japan is astoundingly impressive when you realize that this has only come about rapidly with the introduction of HTPs," said Nancy Loucas, Executive Director of the Coalition of Asia-Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates (CAPHRA).

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OCSA’s membership totals over 3,000 independently run C-Stores in Ontario and the association advocates on behalf of the entire sector of 6,000 family-run stores.

In this episode of RegWatch learn about the pressure tactics which Bryans says big tobacco is using to maneuverer around the quickly changing regulatory environment and find out how new restrictions on the sale of vaping products represent a lost opportunity to communicate the virtues of vaping as an alternative to smoking.

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Vaping is perceived differently across the pond. Instead of portraying it as a trap to lure kids to a nicotine-dependent life and pave the way to smoking, British public health authorities see what vaping can be. It was Public Health England (PHE) that commissioned the critical 2015 review that found vaping to be about 95 percent safer than smoking, adding impetus to tobacco harm reduction efforts worldwide.

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In adolescents the use of e-cigarettes doubles the risk of starting to smoke traditional cigarettes, states a position paper [...] "Vaping is marketed towards teenagers and the tobacco industry uses celebrities to promote it as being healthier than smoking," said senior author Professor Maja-Lisa Løchen of UiT The Arctic University of Norway, Tromsø.

"Legislation on the marketing and sales of e-cigarettes varies enormously between countries," said Professor Løchen. "Action is urgently needed to halt the growing use in young people. The World Health Organization (WHO) states that e-cigarettes are harmful to health."

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Medsafe is looking into a new vape which promises to "support balance and mood" and help users "feel more alert," which experts fear could be dangerous.

Inhale Vitamins herbal vapes are marketed via social media with experts saying the company appears to be actively targeting a younger demographic.

One Instagram post, changed after the Herald on Sunday made inquiries, said the Vita Babe inhaler "supports feminine energy, raises wellbeing, and helps with mood management".

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South Africa’s largest cigarette manufacturer, British American Tobacco, says the state’s justification for banning the sale of tobacco products during lockdown is an “exercise in smoke and mirrors” that has produced “few benefits and immense harm”.

BATSA is set to challenge the ban in the Western Cape High Court next month.

The government defeated an earlier court challenge to unban cigarettes from the Fair Trade Independent Tobacco Association in June, with the court ruling that it fell within the powers of the state under the Disaster Management Act to ban the sale of tobacco.

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JUUL and similar pod-based e-cigarettes have been popular with teenagers and young adults since they came on the market in 2015, but little has been known about their health effects. A new systematic review led by researchers from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that while the products may contain lower levels of harmful ingredients than conventional cigarettes, there is no evidence that even these lower levels are safe for youth. The study also found that the devices' efficient delivery of nicotine fosters greater dependence than other types of e-cigarettes.

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We light up a cigar maybe once a month. Of course, they’re no damned good for us. If we had any doubts, the headache and swamp-breath the next day would remove them. Still, a spirit of convivial dissipation tells us to smoke’em if we’ve got’em. No need to warn us off cigars, or the inevitable accompaniments of brown liquor, rich food, and bad behavior. That would be futile.

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The World Health Organization accuses the tobacco industry of devious tactics to get children and young people hooked on their deadly tobacco and nicotine products. In advance of World No Tobacco Day (May 31), the WHO is launching a campaign to alert young people to the dangers they face from the industry’s manipulative practices. Coordinator of WHO’s No Tobacco Unit, Vinayak Prasad, says the tobacco industry invests more than $9 billion a year to advertise its products. He says much of this huge budget targets young people with attractive promotional campaigns.

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Last month, a European Union Revised Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) banning the manufacture and sale of menthol cigarettes went into effect. Despite Brexit, this ban also applies to the UK and includes capsule, click on, click & roll, crushball or dual menthol cigarettes, and excludes vaping and heated tobacco products. However despite the ban, JTI has introduced a replacement range called “New Dual” across its Benson & Hedges, Mayfair and Silk Cut products, which reportedly still contains menthol. To this effect, the UK Government has launched an investigation. [...]

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Rahul (name changed), a 15 year old boy wanted to try smoking but he was afraid it would damage his lungs. So he thought of giving e-cigarettes and vaping a try. But there was a slight problem — India had just banned the sale of e-cigarettes to protect the health of thousands of others like him. He called his best friend Sonu (name changed), also 15, who assured him getting e-cigarettes or any vaping devices is no “big a deal” and the ban “doesn’t matter”. [...] Teenagers like Rahul and Sonu were the reasons why India imposed a ban on e-cigarettes in September last year.

 

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The World Health Organization has launched its first digital health worker, Florence. The digital health worker was created by a company in New Zealand, Soul Machines.

Because Florence is a robot, there is no potential health-related judgment involved.

Greg Cross, co-founder of Soul Machines, said in a video that “The lack of human judgment actually makes our digital people more approachable and potentially more helpful.” The primary purpose of the WHO initiative help convince one billion tobacco users to quit smoking. [...]

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E-cigarette smoking is becoming more popular among Chinese middle school students as the proportion of e-cigarettes smokers had increased significantly in 2019, according to a survey published on the 33rd World No Tobacco Day (WNTD) on Sunday, which was also one day before the fifth anniversary of China's capital Beijing banning public smoking. 

Experts, who widely promote quitting smoking, called on the public to protect young people from traditional tobacco products and e-cigarettes, which is also the theme of the 33rd WNTD.

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Women smokers are four times as likely as their non-smoking peers to harbour an unruptured aneurysm—a weakened bulging artery—in the brain, finds research published online in the Journal of Neurology Neurosurgery & Psychiatry. And this risk is even greater—7 times as high—if they also have high blood pressure, the findings indicate. [...] the researchers studied 545 women aged 30 to 60 undergoing brain scans at five large teaching and research hospitals in the USA and Canada between 2016 and 2018.

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May 30 is World Vape Day and in this episode of RegWatch we speak with Tristan Thompson, head of the Vaping Legion, and Board President of the United Vapers Alliance to recap the events of #WorldVapeDay and learn how vaping advocacy is marshaling its forces for the fight ahead.

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We study the effects of traditional cigarette and e-cigarette taxes on use of these products among adults in the United States. Data are drawn from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System and National Health Interview Survey over the period 2011 to 2018. Using two-way fixed effects models, we find evidence that higher traditional cigarette tax rates reduce adult traditional cigarette use and increase adult e-cigarette use. Similarly, we find that higher e-cigarette tax rates increase traditional cigarette use and reduce e-cigarette use. [...]

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Behavioral and nicotine replacement therapies offered together can help people who are incarcerated quit smoking, according to Rutgers researchers. "Smokers who are incarcerated, similar to other marginalized populations who smoke, lack the necessary skills to quit and have limited access to treatment options," said Pamela Valera, an assistant professor in the Department of Urban-Global Public Health at the Rutgers School of Public Health. "Without smoke cessation resources and treatment, only 5 percent of those who quit will achieve long-term success."

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Two public health experts believe that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's authorization of marketing of IQOS as a modified risk tobacco product should encourage other countries such as the Philippines to take a second look at innovative products as effective means to stop the smoking epidemic.

Prof. Tom Glynn [...] said heat-not-burn tobacco products (HTPs) such as IQOS, electronic cigarettes and other less harmful products provide smokers with better alternatives to cigarettes, as studies show that smoking results in 100,000 deaths in the Philippines each year.

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