Last August FDA Commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb, said that the agency’s new tobacco plan supports product innovation so that smokers can obtain the nicotine they crave, without the added carcinogens derived from the combustion of tobacco. “We’ve opened up a pathway to new product innovations that we think can potentially provide nicotine to people who still want to enjoy satisfying levels of nicotine,” said Dr. Scott Gottlieb in an interview on CNBC.

Smoking rates amongst high school students were cut in half in only five years, during the same period when vaping amongst the same age group peaked.

Gottlieb had added that there are new products on the market that also need to be considered. “Heat not burn. … Also medicinal nicotine products,” he said. “There could be product innovation around those as well to deliver the nicotine in better ways.”

However, despite all this and the significant amount of studies in favour of the products, last month the agency announced it will be expanding its teen anti-smoking campaign, “Real Cost” to include vaping. The anti-vaping campaign was announced by Gottlieb at an anti-tobacco symposium at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, who said that the adverts will be placed in spaces where adolescents spend time, and they will direct teens to the campaign’s website that will be up and running by 2018.

Studies have indicated that vaping is decreasing smoking rates

For the first time since the advent of e-cigs, vaping decreased from 16.0% in 2015 to 11.3% in 2016.

Ironically, data released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) last June, clearly indicated that smoking rates amongst high school students were cut in half in only five years, between 2011 to 2016, during the same period when vaping amongst the same age group increased from 1.5% to a peak of 16.0% in 2015. But this is not all!

The percentage of high school students using e-cigarettes has also dropped. For the first time since the advent of electronic cigarettes, vaping decreased from 16.0% in 2015 to 11.3% in 2016, while smoking in that same period dropped from 9.3% to 8.0%.

Hence a question is raised. When data are clearly indicating that an increase in vaping not only correlates to a decrease in smoking, but also that e-cigarettes are not hooking teens on nicotine in the same way that cigarettes do, is campaigning against vaping the sensible thing to do?

Read Further : The New American

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