Vaping the greatest public health intervention

When Dr. Chris Ford, member of IDHDP (International Doctors for Healthier Drug Policies) recently attended the Global Forum on Nicotine in Warsaw, she wasn’t prepared to have her mind changed about e-cigarette use.

But after speaking to conference attendees who were vaping and watching the film A Billion Lives by Aaron Biebert, she discovered that evidence didn’t support the current restrictions and outright bans on e-cigarettes.

She also realized that there was overwhelming evidence that vaping could have a positive impact on helping people quit smoking by providing a much safer delivery system for nicotine.

Making E-cigarettes Available to Everyone

Currently 80% of the world’s smokers live in the poorest countries where restrictions on tobacco advertising don’t exist. In these countries however e-cigarette vendors are being prosecuted and even jailed.  Bans on the sale of e-cigarettes currently exist in countries as diverse as India and Australia. In the UK, USA and Canada e-cigarettes are regulated and restricted in the same way as tobacco.

After the conference, Dr. Ford wrote an article for the DDN. She noted “The selling of tobacco for smoking is probably the most immoral and insidious form of drug dealing in the world – more than 6 million people die every year from it … The top three global health problems – ischaemic heart disease, cerebrovascular disease and chronic obstructive airways disease – are directly related to smoking.”

“There seems to be a ‘war on e-cigarettes’, with vendors being prosecuted and even jailed in countries as diverse as India and Australia. ‘Big pharma’, who have put millions into nicotine replacement therapy, and tobacco companies, who have been left behind in the development, are both supporting the anti-e-cigarette propaganda.”

Dr. Ford also stated, “E-cigarettes could possibly be the greatest public health intervention of our lifetime, and everything possible must be done to make them accessible to all. We must ensure that this new, much safer, way of consuming nicotine isn’t just available in the richer countries, leaving the lethal hot smoke mechanisms to be sold in their billions to the poorest in the world.”

Health Professionals Support E-Cigarette Use

IDHDP is a global network of medical doctors that supports drug policies based on the health of individuals and society. The organization supports healthier drug policies based on putting the health of people first.

IDHDP currently has nearly 1300 members spanning 100 countries.

The Royal College of Physicians states that risks associated with vaping are unlikely to exceed five per cent of the risks of smoking tobacco cigarettes and supports the use of e-cigarettes to as an aid to quitting smoking.