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PRI’s Positive Ecig Position

The American Physicians Research Institute has issued a position statement on the subject of vaping, and it is very positive

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The American Physicians Research Institute has issued a position statement on the subject of vaping, and it is very positive. The Baltimore based organisation has relied on the quality independent research that has been conducted in the United Kingdom and ignored the laughably bad junk science produced in the States.

The Physicians Research Institute says: “A State Medical Society member of PRI recently requested information on the value of vaping as a harm reduction solution to tobacco use. There is considerable information, pro and con, with respect to the subject of vaping and PRI was unable to give its member Medical Society an informed answer. Accordingly, the PRI Board decided to retain an expert with respect to vaping and related issues.

The Physicians Research Institute Board appointed Dr Cheryl Olson, Sc.D., to look into the subject. Dr Olson is a public health expert and was a member of the Harvard Medical School research faculty for over 15 years. She has an extensive publication record and is a sought-after lecturer on matters related to public health.

Speaking for the Physicians Research Institute, Joseph Schwartz III said: “The PRI Board decided that she would be an ideal person to report to PRI and its member State Medical Societies with respect to vaping and related issues.

She identified:

  • Over 30 million adult Americans still smoke.
  • Cigarettes take nearly half a million lives each year.
  • Today’s smokers have more disadvantages; quitting is harder.
  • Standard cessation treatments (nicotine replacement therapies and medications) usually fail.
  • Most physicians misperceive the risks of nicotine; the danger arises from combustion.
  • Electronic nicotine delivery systems (e-cigarettes) are a legal alternative.
  • Smoking is at least 20 times more harmful than vaping nicotine.
  • In randomised controlled trials and population surveys, e-cigarettes outperform nicotine replacement therapies. Even smokers not planning to quit do so with vaping.
  • Switching from smoking to vaping leads to rapid measurable reductions in biomarkers of harm.

Dr Olson referenced the UK’s latest evidence update, quoting that smoking remains “the largest single risk factor for death and years of life lived in ill-health globally.”

This has helped lead the Physicians Research Institute to conclude that, “today’s quit-smoking medications are failing most smokers.”

It says latest research results align with multiple population studies and have found “no effect of NRT, bupropion or varenicline on one-year smoking abstinence rates. In other words, the available patches and pills barely budge the needle on real-world smoking levels.

They quote Vaughan Rees, of Harvard’s School of Public Health, saying at the 2022 E-Cigarette Summit, “The best evidence-based interventions are dated, overrated and cannot meet the challenge of reducing tobacco-related harm in this century.”

The Physicians Research Institute says that while abstinence from tobacco use is the ideal, “the next-best result, for individuals who can’t or don’t want to quit nicotine, is movement down the continuum of risk: away from combusted tobacco to a less harmful product. One possible alternative: E-cigarettes.”

In repeating “Vaping poses only a small fraction of the risk of smoking”, can this position statement be the start of a shift away from the USA’s ridiculous approach to tobacco harm reduction?


Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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