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  1. #1
    Sik
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    Letter to Vic Health

    Given we dont have a subforum yet for political stuffs im gonan spam here.

    Sent to Jim Hyde @ Vic Health 05.05.11

    Prevention and Population Health
    Director: Jim Hyde
    Enquiries: Tel (61 3) 9096 5200
    Email: Jim.Hyde@health.vic.gov.au

    The Prevention & Population Health branch focuses on primary prevention, screening, early detection, and whole of government activities including 'Go for your life' and the National Partnership Agreement on Preventive Health.

    Dear Sir,

    I am writing to you in your role as listed on the vic health website with the The Prevention and Population Health branch in regards to Tobacco Harm Minimisation and Cancer Prevention in smokers by using electronic Cigarettes as an alternative to combustable tobacco products. I myself am now an ex-smoker having had no cigarettes in over 4 months. I have tried various methods of quitting in the past none of which have been effective.

    I have sourced electronic cigarettes and nicotine liquid under what i believe are provisions in the TGA's personal importation program to allow me to import a 3 month supply at any given time. As a consumer who had for over 15 years (scince the age of 13) been addicted to cigarettes i have found these products to be invaluable to me in reducing my risk of contracting serious health problems due to smoking and it is my belief that all smokers should have more ready access to this alternative.

    Various research from around the world suggests that e-cigarettes are at worse no more damaging than cigarettes, at best much less damaging and anecdotal evidence would suggest far more effective as nicotine replacement therapy than any currently available products on the market.

    Currently in Australia the legislation surrounding nicotine and electronic cigarettes seems to be a bit of a grey area and i was hoping for some clarification as to Health the Victoria stance on these products and an understanding of why no official body in this country seems to be undertaking any sort of research or evaluation of these products.

    I am not sure how familiar you are with electronic cigarettes or personal vapourisers, the below are some links to various research and organisations for the reduction of harm caused by tobacco products. I Look forward to hearing back from you or being pointed in the direction of an appropriate person.

    General Information

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electronic_cigarette


    In the USA

    E-cigarettes, e-liquid and other nicotine containing products are now classified as unregulated tobacco products

    Today's annoucement by the FDA http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Public.../ucm252360.htm to not appeal Judge Richard Leon's ruling in NJOY v FDA https://ecf.dcd.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin...?2009cv0771-54 to the US Supreme Court means that e-cigarettes, e-liquid, nicotine gums, lozenges, patches, skin creams and nasal sprays are now unregulate tobacco products according to federal law (as long as no therapeutic claim is made by the manufacturer/importer).

    These nicotine products now join cigars and pipe tobacco as unregulated tobacco products under the Family Smoking Prevention Tobacco Control Act. Currently regulated tobacco products include cigarettes, roll-your-own and smokeless tobacco.

    Dr Micheal Siegel from Boston University suggests that electronic cigarettes are far safer than their tobacco alternative

    http://sph.bu.edu/insider/Recent-New...er-claims.html

    The CASAA has compiled various pieces of information with regards to electronic cigarettes

    http://www.casaa.org/harmreduction/casaa.asp?pageID=40

    A study from Harvard states that the level of TSNA's in electronic cigarettes are significantly lower than in cigarettes and comparable to those found in the nicotine patch. It also states that, few if any of the chemicals in an ecigarette pose any significant health risk.

    http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/centers-...ticle.jphp.pdf

    In New Zealand

    Research suggests that e-cigarettes are far less likely to cause cancer than they are to prevent it. The sale of approved e-cigarettes is allowed directly through pharmacies and it is also legal for New Zealanders to import their own electronic cigarettes and nicotine. Research conducted by New Zealand health reinforces the findings listed above in the US studies.

    http://www.healthnz.co.nz/RuyanCartr...t30-Oct-08.pdf

    http://www.healthnz.co.nz/cancerrisk.htm


    in response to NY Times Katie Zezima Cigarettes Without Smoke, or Regulationhttp://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/02/us/02cigarette.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=electronic%20cigare ttes&st=cse

    “During 2008-9 I have coordinated rigorous safety tests by 8 laboratories on the Ruyan e-cigarette, funded by Ruyan. www.healthnz.co.nz/coynews.htm Of over 50 priority tobacco smoke toxicants, none was found in any but trace quantity. Nicotine is safe used as medicine. Propylene glycol has been used on bedfast children in 1942-43 as an aerosol germicide by University of Chicago researchers, without adverse effect. All up, we find the Ruyan e-cigarette safe in the common meaning of that word, and much safer than smoking tobacco. The FDA and other drug regulators will hopefully keep the e-cigarettes on sale (as in the UK), while further research can be conducted and suitable approvals applied for. Simply banning e-cigarettes will simply consign thousands of e-smokers back to smoking tobacco and an early death. That would be crazy.Murray Laugesen public health physician “ Christchurch, New Zealand

    In the UK

    Electronic cigarettes are currently unregulated and freely available however the MHRA have undergone a public consultation process with regards to regulating these products the outcome was essentially that more research was needed before any regulations were imposed. Submissions and outcomes are available from the link below.

    http://www.mhra.gov.uk/Publications/...MLXs/CON065617

    Regards
    Current Vape: Variable Wattage mod, EPM Boge tanks, Something Fruity

  2. #2
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    If you're sending it as a letter, can I suggest you use a short URL service for the links. They still probably won't visit any, but it would at least make it easier for them to type in if they decide to actually check sources

  3. #3
    Sik
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    It was an email.

    edit: I'm trying the preventative angle first and to see what sort of response is forthcoming.. Next stop will be Mental Health, Drugs and Regions :P
    Last edited by Sik; 05-05-11 at 01:44 PM.
    Current Vape: Variable Wattage mod, EPM Boge tanks, Something Fruity

  4. #4
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    Good one Sic.

  5. #5
    Sik
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    I've also put requests in the with the Cancer Council of Victoria and the Heart Foundation for contact details of people involved in the Tobacco Harm Reduction aspects of the repective organisations.

    Together with Vic Health and the State Government these are the organisations that fund and support quit.org.au . I will contact QUIT as well, but i expect i will get given a copy and paste "its an unapproved therapy" blah blah response as they simply promote someone elses agenda.
    Current Vape: Variable Wattage mod, EPM Boge tanks, Something Fruity

  6. #6
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    Great letter, Sik!
    If the answer on your letter will not take action or bring positive result, I think the second step should be the same letter with our signatures in one of the newspapers.
    p s Sorry for my bad English, this is my second language.
    GGTB, SS GGTS#298+UFS, SS GGTS#194+UFS. LOVE IT!!!

  7. #7
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    Good on ya Sik! This is what we all need to do before it is banned within Australia, the more time we take up of these officials in regards to the benefits, the better. Trying to "stay under the radar" is allowing the councils and groups to pass laws based on their own opinions (usually uneducated). I suggest everyone that has themselves or have a friend/loved one that has reaped the benefits of electronic cigarettes should take a couple minutes to write or call an official to (politely) voice their opinion and experiences. They should be encouraged to relay the links you've shared. In my opinion, these products save tobacco smokers lives physically and financially around the world.

  8. #8
    Sik
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    Well, i got an out of office response till the 27/05

    So have sent the same letter to

    Mental Health, Drugs and Regions
    Executive Director: Dr Karleen Edwards
    Enquiries: Tel (61 3) 9096 1314
    Email: Karleen.Edwards@health.vic.gov.au
    Current Vape: Variable Wattage mod, EPM Boge tanks, Something Fruity

  9. #9
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    Champion effort Sik!!!!

  10. #10
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    I have contacted a lead representative for Queensland health in regards to this. They are claiming nicotine in any liquid form to be a schedule 8 poison unless categorized specifically by the TGA (Therapeutic Goods Administration). These are the people we need to contact inn regards to making/keeping e juice legal for importation for personal use. Mind you, contacting others (eg, Prevention and Population Health, ect.) does put pressure for a positive outcome. Please post any direct contact info found for the TGA and National Manager, Dr Rohan Hammett other than the following:

    You can assist us by providing information required under the therapeutic products legislation in a timely and accurate manner. This will assist us in our commitment to improving our service. You can also assist by providing complaints, compliments and suggestions about this charter or our service to:

    Chief Operating Officer
    Therapeutic Goods Administration
    PO Box 100
    WODEN ACT 2606

    or contact the Customer Feedback/Complaints Service:

    Telephone: 1800 020 653 (8:30-5:00 M-F)
    Email: info@tga.gov.au
    Users who are deaf or have a hearing or speech impairment can call through the National Relay Service:
    TTY or computer with modem users phone 1800 555 677 then ask for 1800 020 653
    Speak and listen (speech to speech relay) users phone 1800 555 727 then ask for 1800 020 653




    I will be calling in the morning and post update.

 

 
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