Although scientific studies have shown that heated tobacco products (HTP) are safer than combustible cigarettes, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) prevented tobacco giant Philip Morris from launching IQOS in Australia.
It is estimated that approximately 239,000 people in Australia use e-cigarettes, and 178,000 of them use e-cigarettes more than once a month. For regulators, reducing the use of e-cigarettes is still a challenge, because these devices are legal, but the use of nicotine-containing refills is not. Local public health experts and Liberal Party MPs have been working hard to overturn the current nicotine ban.
In August 2016, several public health activists, including the New Nicotine Alliance (NNA), submitted proposals to the local regulatory agency Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) to remove nicotine concentrations below 3.6% in the Poisons Standard. However, in February 2017, TGA rejected the proposal and maintained the original nicotine ban.
Sadly, on another stand against harm reduction, TGA has also rejected the application to introduce HTP. The e-cigarette industry itself is still skeptical of HTP products. Research shows that although HTP produced by tobacco companies is not as safe as vape, they are still safer than combustible cigarettes. Public health experts have long pointed out that the safer alternatives available on the market, the greater the chance of success for smokers seeking to quit.
Heated tobacco products emit fewer carcinogens than cigarettes
A recent study comparing the number of carcinogens in conventional cigarettes and heated tobacco products found that the latter contains about 10 to 25 times lower carcinogens than cigarettes. On the other hand, TGA claims that such products are “no public health benefit” and are very likely to cause harm to the human body, and they are only a new way to provide nicotine rather than “quit smoking” products.
Philip Morris spokesman Simon Breheny said the decision disappointed millions of smokers in Australia. “It puts Australia at odds with many other countries who have decided to regulate heated tobacco and smoke-free alternatives,” he said. On the contrary, the senior manager of the School of Public Health at the University of Sydney, Becky Freeman, thinks this It was the right decision. “The right decision was made,” she said. “They are not some miracle product that reduces smoking.”
Japan: The introduction of HTP helps reduce smoking rates
Simultaneously, the latest data from Japan, the world’s ninth-largest cigarette market, shows that the introduction of HTPs has played a significant role in reducing local smoking rates. “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).
This article is issued by Vaping Post.