Farsalinos, COVID-19 and Vaping

Posted 21st January 2021 by Dave Cross
Harm Reduction journal has published an expanded re-analysis of a recent publication by Konstantinos Farsalinos, Pantelis Bagos, Theodoros Giannouchos, Raymond Niaura, Anastasia Barbouni and Konstantinos Poulas. They examined smoking prevalence among hospitalised COVID-19 patients. Next week, Konstantinos Farsalinos will host a press conference for the launch of a Declaration on E-Cigarettes and Public Health.

A number of prominent public health bodies in the United States who regularly indulge in anti-vaping nonsense have used the COVID-19 pandemic as an opportunity to further smear everything containing nicotine running contrary to an unusually low prevalence of smoking among hospitalised patients.

The research paper says: “The same studies as examined in the previous meta-analysis were analysed. The POR [prevalence odds ratio] relative to the expected smoking prevalence was calculated using gender and age-adjusted population smoking rates. Random-effects meta-analyses were used for all other associations.”

Again, they found “a particularly low prevalence of smoking among hospitalized COVID-19”. In fact, there were 75% fewer hospitalised smokers than would normally be expected.

They concluded that smokers should still quit as soon as possible due to the health risks combusted tobacco presents but investigating the use of pharmaceutical nicotine as potential therapeutic option for COVID patients is imperative.

The Declaration

On 25 January, Dr Farsalinos will host the launch of The Declaration on E-Cigarettes and Public Health. It has been compiled by a working group of 8 experts, convened by The Smoking Behavior Research Unit of the Department of Public and Community Health of the University of West Attica.

Vape Club

The working group includes:

  • Prof Anastasia Barbouni, Department of Public and Community Health, University of West Attica, Greece
  • Dr Konstantinos Farsalinos, Department of Public and Community Health, University of West Attica, Greece
  • Prof Gerard Dubois, French Academy of Medicine, France
  • Prof Bernd Mayer, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Karl-Franzens University Graz, Austria
  • Prof Raymond Niaura, Departments of Social and Behavioral Science and Epidemiology, College of Global Public Health, New York University, USA
  • Prof Lion Shahab, Department of Behavioural Science and Health, University College London, UK
  • Prof Heino Stöver, Faculty of Health and Social Work, University of Frankfurt, Germany
  • Prof David Sweanor, Faculty of Law and Faculty of Medicine, University of Ottawa, Canada

The group says vaping, “remains a controversial issue that has generated intense worldwide debate concerning their net impact on Public Health. Harm reduction, a concept and strategy of reducing harm associated with harmful behaviours and product use, is largely acceptable and essential in several public health issues, including common daily activities such as the use of seatbelts and helmets. Still, tobacco harm reduction and e-cigarettes have generated a lot of opposition, resulting in misconceptions and confusion.”

The Declaration is, “an effort to set the priorities and clarify misconceptions concerning e-cigarettes.”


  • Smoking prevalence among hospitalized COVID-19 patients and its association with disease severity and mortality: an expanded re-analysis of a recent publication” by Farsalinos, Bagos, Giannouchos, Niaura, Barbouni & Poulas – [link]

 Dave Cross
Article by Dave Cross
Freelance writer, physicist, karateka, dog walker
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