Friday 28 March 2014

The MHRA Reprise The Role Of Canute

There's something rather subversive going on at stop smoking clinics recently, starting in Leicester a couple of weeks ago.
[W]e are proud to say that we are the first stop smoking service in the country to officially announce that we are ‘e-cig friendly’.

Although we can’t actually supply e-cigarettes, we have listened to the many people who want to change their smoking behaviour. E-cigs are becoming increasingly popular, and we want to learn more about how effective they are in helping people stop smoking for good.
Ouch! That's gotta sting the anti-tobacco luddites who are desperately pretending that e-cigs are useless and are making up fake dangers to put people off.

But it seems to have sparked off others to follow suit. Yesterday, 'Julia' from Hampshire's version made enquiries on the UK Vapers forum.
Hi, I am a service manager with the NHS stop smoking service in Hampshire.
We are trying to find out more about vaping and the products used to improve the support that we can offer to smokers who want to quit tobacco with an e cig / vaper. 
I have read all the academic reports and papers on E cigs but we don't even understand the language used! How do the 'kits' vary, what the differences are between the products for the user and so on? Most of us used to smoke and know about tobacco but we have not used E Cigs. 
If you are in Hampshire and could come in for a chat (office in Aldershot, Fareham or Ashurts) - we promise no lectures, group hugs or any of the strange things you may think the NHS get up to! Or perhaps we can visit you in a coffee shop where E Cigs are allowed to be used as they are not permitted on NHS sites at present? 
We have heard about the great work done in Leicester with UK vapers - can we do this in Hampshire too?
So interested are they in these "useless" devices that they are leaving the comfort zone of NHS premises - because the caring, sharing NHS has forced them to - in order to see what all the fuss is about.

On the same day, Hertfordshire announced on Twitter that they're looking kindly on e-cigs too.

Common sense in spades, despite the fact that - as evidenced by Hampshire's admission of a ban on NHS property - the official health lobby line is to demonise them as demanded by pharmaceutical industry diktat.

Meanwhile, the tobacco control industry continues to fabricate misinformation and encourage scare stories against vaping, and has harried and whined so much over the years that it's still official MHRA policy to insist they are regulated as medicines from 2016.

There used to be a bunch of idiots who thought King Canute was so powerful that he could turn back the tide. The modern equivalent are haranguing the MHRA to do the same in resisting a product which will inevitably engulf them due to people power and overwhelming approval.

When even stop smoking services are implicitly laughing in their faces, it really is time for tobacco control and the MHRA to swallow their pride; give up their laughable crusade; and face reality.

SEE ALSO: Why e-cigs could be the saviour of ASH at the Free Society, published after I originally penned the article above.


SteveW said...

Predictably, though, ASH will continue to vilify the very industry which could give the misleading impression that they, and the MHRA, are not the feckless, hateful cretins they've demonstrated themselves to be. A pox on both their houses.

For shame.

Waited to long. said...

Its about time the Liberty loving brigade had a reality check,the anti smoking neurotics will not amend their neurosis untill their financial incentive is outweighed by their apprehension of the unforseen consequences.
Anyone who campaigns to treat millions like rats should expect a touch of ankle gnawing.

John Gray said...

You can get eaten by rats too! I love the idea!

Lollylulubes said...

Provided people get good advice on the correct level of nicotine and buy a decent set up, then switching is easy. It shouldn't be long before these NHS Managers (massive kudos) are rewarded with great results and now these three have had the guts to defy the ANTZ it should, hopefully, snowball and make it far more difficult for them to continue lying through their teeth and pretending excellent research and efficacy don't exist. Their lies are so pathetic and immoral in the face of the evidence that any credibility they might once have had (debatable, I know), lies in tatters ..... like plain packaging I hope ..... and they are just looking utterly foolish and dishonest to us and their peers.

It's the general public, politicians and PH who need the real facts and soon! It would be good to see these Managers sending press releases to the media - positive P.R. from professionals is something we need more of and consistently to counter the swathes of propaganda. Poisons this week, I wonder what little gems they will have dreamed up for next week, whilst sitting in their big offices, doodling their days away, dreaming of a utopia they will never achieve no matter how many dirty tricks.

Mark..s. said...

Dick, Nice to read the post , but should we engage with these taxpayer and big pharma funded types, after all there can be no safe level of funding.

P.S. "Group Hugs" well that person has got used to talking down to people.

Lollylulubes said...

The only concern I have .... if it actually exists is, by having health professionals recommending them, could that give the ANTZ ammunition for the medicinal route? Jane Ellison once said that if they're promoted as cessation aids, that automatically makes them medicines. In fairness, I think Louisa Ross in Leicester has said they would be recommended for changing smoking behaviour, which encompasses their primary purpose of continuing to use nicotine recreationally without the harmful tobacco mix and smoke. It's how vendors market them and most of us use them and by definition, of course, that means you do cease or at least cut down tobacco use, but how people use them after that is their business. It's great that it's happening as it will offer reassurance to those on the fence who are worried about all the idiotic scaremongering propaganda. I think it's very important to engage with them as closely as possible because, if they're going to do it, they must do it well and experienced vapers are the only experts.