A public health perspective on combating youth e-cigarette use while aiming at the bull’s eye: the end of combustible tobacco use
16:40 - 16:55
Public Health & Policy
In February 2018, the American Cancer Society published its Position Statement on Electronic Cigarettes, which counseled “that clinicians support all attempts to quit the use of combustible tobacco and work with smokers to eventually stop using any tobacco product, including e-cigarettes.” It recognized that “Some smokers, despite firm clinician advice, will not attempt to quit smoking cigarettes and will not use FDA approved cessation medications.” It further advised, based on a comprehensive review of the scientific evidence, that “These individuals should be encouraged to switch to the least harmful form of tobacco product possible; switching to the exclusive use of e-cigarettes is preferable to continuing to smoke combustible products.” It also concluded that “these individuals should be regularly advised to completely quit using all tobacco products.” In the year since the release of that statement, the controversy surrounding alternative nicotine delivery products has grown even more fraught, due in great part to the rapid increase in consumption of e-cigarettes by youth in the United States. An additional consequence of the understandable media focus on the youth e-cigarette epidemic is that the exponentially larger impact of combustible cigarette smoking on the public’s health receives disproportionately scant attention, seldom earning the headlines that the #1 cause of preventable death calls for.
- Cliff Douglas JD Vice President, Tobacco Control - Director, Center for Tobacco Control, American Cancer Society
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