Hey there! Dawn again and today we are going to round out our ten part series regarding the 2017 E-Cigarette Summit that took place in Washington D.C on May 8th of this year. If you have taken the time to read parts I, II, III, IV, V, V.2, VI, VII, VII.2, VIII and IX then you freaking rock! Please keep in mind that this blog series is different than most of the blog post that I do here on the A Clean Cigarette blog. In this case, I am reporting on information that was presented at the E-Cigarette Summit. The claims, thoughts, and opinions I am reporting on do not necessarily reflect those of A Clean Cigarette brand electronic cigarettes. E-cigarettes contain nicotine. Nicotine is an addictive chemical. If you are a never smoker, never start!! A Clean Cigarette brand electronic cigarettes are not intended to treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease. Nothing you inhale beside clean air is GOOD for you!
Okay on to the good stuff!
Wow, this has been a long series and I really want to say thank you one more time to you guys for reading this information. Being here means you care, and that really means a lot! The next speaker we are going to talk about is a name that you may remember from previous posts on this blog. Not only is Ann McNeill is a Professor of Addictions in the National Addiction Centre with a focus on tobacco she is one of the primary names on the Public Health England report that states that e-cigarettes are approximately 95% less harmful than burning tobacco. That claim in itself was ground breaking for the electronic cigarette industry.
In fact, that report which you can read more about HERE, played a large part in the UK’s decision to allow e-cigarettes and vapor products to not only apply for a smoking cessation license but also to market e-cigarettes and vapor products as tobacco harm reduction devices.With that in mind, I am sure you can understand how excited I was to learn she would be a featured speaker at the summit.Professor Ann McNeil’s lecture did not disappoint either. According to Professor McNeil, “E-Cigarettes are the most popular smoking cessation product in England.” That statement alone is a huge revelation on this side of the pond where our own FDA has recently deemed e-cigarettes as tobacco products. A decision that not only placed excessive and potentially industry killing burdens on Vapor products and E-Cigarettes but made it nearly impossible for the same devices that are being used in England to save lives to even suggest that a smoker would be better off getting nicotine electronically vs. via burning tobacco.
While Professor McNeil does support e-cigarettes as smoking cessation devices and does believe the evidence shows that e-cigarettes are substantially less harmful than their burning tobacco counterparts. She also believes that safe guards need to be in place to prevent the misuse of these products, particularly in the case of e-cigarette sales to minors and never smokers.
For my part: I was very excited to hear from Professor McNeil. I believe that her work with Public health England as well as her past work in regards to tobacco control truly shows her commitment to saving lives. I look forward to seeing more from this amazing voice of reason for the tobacco harm reduction community! The evidence her work has shined a light on is powerful. Thank you, Professor McNeil, for taking the time to make such a massive positive difference in our world!
My job here at A Clean Cigarette is not only the company blogger. In fact, the job title I actually hold here at A Clean Cigarette is as a Medical Educator. This means that I spend a lot of time talking to Doctors, Clinicians, and other medical professionals. So when I heard that Dr. John R. Hughes, M.D. who is the Professor of Psychiatry and Psychological Science at the University of Vermont and who is board certified in Psychiatry and Addiction Psychiatry, would be speaking about the challenges for Clinicians in regards to e-cigarettes and the available evidence, I was intrigued.
Dr. Hughes explained questions that clinicians hear from their patients and the issues that they have providing answers for their clientele. Questions such as:
According to Dr. Hughes, while evidence does support the fact that e-cigarettes do offer harm reduction in compared to burning tobacco, they should not necessarily be used as a “first line treatment“. That being said he did state if a patient chooses to use e-cigarettes as smoking cessation tools that he would “not stand in the way.” He also stated that in general Clinicians are not necessarily worried about “public health” but instead are worried about providing a “valued treatment to one person (the patient), not the public as a whole”.
While the information he spoke about was very encouraging to me it is important to note that after Dr. Hughes’s lecture and during the Q&A section of the event one of the audience members made a rather well-said statement that I wish had been more thoroughly addressed. The gentlemen simply stated that “Physicians will remain confused when all the of the Medical Associations (IE. American Heart Association) will not put statements forward in favor of (e-Cigs as) harm reduction.”
For my part: Dr. Hughes had more to say on this topic and he talked about things ranging from the fact that unfortunately, e-cigarettes are yet to be standardized as far as basic manufacturing quality which makes it difficult for medical professionals to get behind the industry as a whole to topics like how recommending e-cigarettes compares to recommending medical marijuana. The information he provided me personally will definitely help me in my communications with all types of medical personnel. In addition, his call for more “evidence based medicine” was very appreciated. So, Thank You, Dr. Hughes, for not only taking the time to help the industry but for also helping me in my career!
The next speaker we had the privilege of hearing at the 2017 E-Cigarette Summit is Professor Dorothy Hatsukami, who is the Associate Director of Cancer Prevention and Control at the Masonic Cancer Center’s, University of Minnesota branch. She spoke in regards to ANDS (Alternative Nicotine Delivery Systems)
Professor Hatsukami asked some very interesting ideas about what could be done on the policy front in order to promote e-cigarette usage amongst smokers. According to her, it might be possible that if regulations were brought forward to reduce nicotine content in burning tobacco, add additional burning tobacco taxes and create additional barricades to the sales of tobacco then perhaps we would see an even larger uptick in smokers switching to electronic cigarettes for their nicotine delivery.
For my part: I had never thought about this end of the topic. Professor Hatsukami opened my eyes to another possible way to handle the worlds deadliest consumer product, the burning tobacco cigarette. I tend to agree with at least a few of her idea’s although I do not think that any of her suggestions will be taking effect in the near future. Either way, it’s nice to see a lady of her caliber thinking outside the box when it comes to encouraging smokers to switch from burning tobacco to e-cigarettes as their nicotine delivery method of choice. Thanks, Doc!!
The last speaker of this amazing Summit (yep you heard that right this is the last one!) was certainly NOT the least of the speakers! In fact, Tom Miller is the Attorney General for Iowa. Now you may think based on the government produced propaganda we have seen in the past that as an Attorney General he would be opposed to e-cigarettes as harm reduction. That, however, could not be further from the truth.
In AG Tom Millers opinion it is the job of the Attorney General’s office to act as a gate keeper for consumer protection. As a Harvard Law graduate, he believes that it is his office’s legal duty to ensure that the best available possible evidence is accurately communicated to the public so that the public can make the informed decisions. During his lecture, he implied that with the currently available evidence that perhaps that is not what is being done here in the US when it comes to electronic cigarettes.
Mr. Miller pointed out that it is very hard to argue against the fact that e-cigarettes are in fact a harm reduction tool and that while they are not a “harmless” product they are definitely less harmful than burning tobacco which kills approximately 600K people each year in the US alone. He indicated that he would like to see the FDA and other government agencies come together to produce common sense regulation based on actual science.
For my part: Heck YA!!! I completely agree! Really there is little more I can say to that other than, thank you so much, AG Tom Miller! And if you are a resident of Iowa, seriously consider voting for this man in future elections. He has we the people in mind and in his heart!!
Well, we did it, folks! We are officially done with the coverage from the 2017 E-Cigarette Summit! (Phew!) I know it was a lot of reading and I know it was a lot of information, but it’s worth it.
The fact is burning tobacco and burning tobacco related illnesses claim over 6 million lives a year in the world. 600K a year in the US alone. So if we can change the way nicotine is delivered we may save up to a BILLION lives this century….think about that. A Billion Mom’s, Dad’s sister and brothers. A billion HUMANS that could live and that’s a billion reasons to spread this information to as many people as we can. So yes, doing a 10 part (12 really with the dual weeks) blog series was a bunch of work. and yes, it would have been way more fun for me to write on more interesting and fun subjects. and yes more readers would have stopped into the blog in the last 9 weeks if I would have added more topics than just the E-Cigarette Summit. But for a billion lives, it’s worth it. It’s so worth it that if I have the chance and there is still a need, I will do it again every year. Because you’re worth it.
Thank_you so much for being here, can’t do it with out you!
PS, I am so sorry for the delay on this blog! there is a good reason and I will be announcing it in our next blog post! Stay tuned!