The “Quit, Don’t Switch” campaign, blatantly ignores all the scientific data indicating that vaping devices and e-cigarettes are the most effective smoking cessation aides to date.
The ALA “believes everyone who uses tobacco products can quit using methods that are proven safe and effective by the FDA….” This despite the fact that research has clearly indicated that in comparison to e-cigarettes, these methods have had little success.
The smoking cessation tools deemed safe by the FDA include nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) products such as gums, patches and lozenges; prescription medications like Chantix; and counseling programs. However academic literature keeps indicating that due to the similar hand to mouth motion used for smoking, vaping is the most compelling cessation method to smokers, and therefore the one that produces the best results.
Switching to vaping remains the most effective smoking cessation method
Infact, a study by endowed chair in tobacco harm reduction research, and member of the James Graham Brown Cancer Center at the University of Louisville, Brad Rodu, which analyzed data from the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) Survey, found that e-cigarettes were used by 2.2 million smokers, NRTs by 1.47 million, prescription drugs by 418,000 and smokeless tobacco by 124,000.
Most importantly, besides being the most commonly used, e-cigarettes produced the best results with 540,000 managing to quit successfully, while NRT and prescription drugs combined, helped about 354,000.
The ALA campaign contradicts itself
An article on Filter rightly points out that the ALA campaign ignores the fact “that tobacco products exist on a continuum of risk,” and fails to recognize switching from smoking to vaping as quitting. “They state that ‘Switching to e-cigarettes does not mean quitting. Quitting means ending your addiction to nicotine….’ This is especially odd considering that the prevailing opinion of health organizations is that long-term use of nicotine replacement therapy—which supplies users with nicotine to ease withdrawal symptoms—is a safe means of quitting smoking.”
This is even more odd given the fact that the campaign itself is suggesting using nicotine products in order to quit, as long as these are FDA approved.
“In fact, nicotine replacement therapy works in a strikingly similar way to e-cigarettes: The person is still consuming nicotine—whether orally, in the cases of gum and lozenges; through the skin, in the case of patches; or by inhalation, in the case of e-cigarettes— only there is no combustion, no smoke and no tar,” points out the article.
The FDA’s Comprehensive Plan for Tobacco and Nicotine Regulation
Meanwhile, while in July 2017, the FDA had announced a new comprehensive plan for tobacco and nicotine regulation, claiming that it would encourage the development of harm-reducing products, to date, the agency has failed to approve any electronic devices.
However, last October, the agency had issued a judgement that eight snus smokeless tobacco products can be marketed as being less harmful than smoking.