January 15, 2020
Anti-vaping policies in the United States could put future reductions in lung cancer at risk, an influential industry figure has warned.
Responding to statistics from the American Cancer Society that show the biggest one-year drop in lung cancer rates on record, John Dunne, director of the United Kingdom Vaping Industry Association (UKVIA) said:
“While these figures from the US are encouraging, we must note that certain policy measures risk undermining future success. Product restrictions are likely to disincentivise smokers from exploring vaping as a harm reduction tool, while punitive vaping taxation has been shown to keep people smoking cigarettes.”
From February all flavoured e-cigarette pods will be banned in the US, following updated regulations encouraged by President Trump.
US experts are, however, increasingly backing e-cigarettes as an important tool in reducing smoking rates. This week, a report by the US Centre for Disease Control and Protection into EVALI (the cases of lung disease which have been widely blamed on vaping) advised former smokers not to stop vaping: “Adults using e-cigarettes or vaping products as an alternative to cigarettes should not go back to smoking.”
Meanwhile in the UK, a joint report by the anti-tobacco group Action on Smoking and Health and Cancer Research UK urged local authorities in England to hand out e-cigarettes starter packs to smokers to encourage them to quit.
Currently, only 11% of English local authorities do so.
John Dunne says the message to smokers on both sides of the Atlantic is clear: “Public Health England states that vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking cigarettes, which are known to cause cancer. The UKVIA therefore encourages any smoker to make the switch as soon as possible.”