Legislators in Europe need to say no to proposals asking for ecig control as if the devices were medicines.
Electronic cigarettes are instruments that provide smokers with the safe alternative to smoking. They deliver nicotine hit without the toxins, carcinogens and carbon monoxide. Yet, instead of welcoming these products as potential saver of thousands to millions of lives, the European Parliament is set to cast votes on October 8 that will approve new tobacco control directive.
While the intention of the directive is to cut smoking, there is likewise a major provision that wil treat ecigarettes as medicines. If approved and enforced, vapers and smokers will have reduced and limited access to these alternative smoking devices. Obtaining the products will be more troublesome, more expensive; so smokers are likely to turn back to smoking. Such result would be the total opposite of what the government said it is trying to do to protect public health.
Not Free Of Risks
Opponents claim that ecigs lack comprehensive studies to support the fact they are indeed safe. Yet, there are numerous small, but vital studies already performed on the efficacy and safety of these modern devices.
Even if major and wide reaching studies are held to assess electronic cigarettes, it was already established that they are less toxic and harmful than traditional smoke. Smokers and vapers know about this, so even if there are looming regulations, they still use ecigarettes and use them as weaning tool from smoking.
In fact, many vapers can actually attest that they were former smokers and successfully quit with the help of vaping. This increasing popularity worries and threatens Big Pharmaceutical because many smokers are choosing to vape instead of use their nicotine replacement therapies. Thus, pharmaceutical firms lobby against ecigs.
Proper Ecig Control
Indeed, there still remain a lot of things that are unknown about ecigarettes, but the world has already seen how beneficial they are to smokers. Nonetheless, as vendors and sellers are essentially free with no strict regulations to limit them, the quality of some products may be compromised. Besides, the products could also land on the hands of minors.
Therefore, if ecigarettes must be controlled, it should not be as medicines that first require a prescription before it can be purchased. Instead, they need to be regulated as products with guaranteed quality and efficiency that can only be accessed by people of legal age.