IN A MAJOR POLICY SHIFT, the Royal Australian College of General Practitioners has endorsed vaping nicotine for Australian smokers in the latest national smoking cessation guidelines published today.
The peak GP organisation has carefully reviewed all the evidence on the effectiveness and safety of vaping and has determined that it is a legitimate quitting aid for adult smokers.
The guidelines advise GPs and other health professionals to recommend vaping for smokers who want to quit but have tried unsuccessfully with currently available medications.
Endorsement by the College recognises that many smokers struggle to quit with conventional treatments. Even with the best therapies, quit rates are modest and most smokers try and fail repeatedly. The only alternative for many smokers has been to continue to smoke.
Vaping now provides another effective option. Vaping is unique in that it delivers the nicotine smokers are addicted to as well as a “smoking experience” which includes the sensations of smoking, hand-to-mouth ritual and social aspects of smoking. Vaping also delivers the enjoyment and relaxation of a cigarette, but without the thousands of toxic chemicals from burning tobacco.
Australian Tobacco Harm Reduction Association – January 28, 2019.