Boston University’s School of Public Health will hold a vapor debate today, Wednesday, October 19, when two of the world’s leading experts on electronic cigarettes share the stage at the 2016 William J. Bicknell Lecture. Headlined E-cigarettes: Good Idea? Bad Idea? it is free and open to the public.
Linda Bauld, a University of Stirling professor of health policy and deputy director of the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies, says that while e-cigarettes are not risk-free, they are an important alternative to “a uniquely deadly product that kills one in two of its regular users.” She says there is no firm evidence that e-cigarettes are a gateway to conventional cigarette use among young adults.
Andrea Villanti, director for regulatory science and policy at the Schroeder Institute for Tobacco Research and Policy Studies at Truth Initiative, agrees that the devices are effective quit-smoking aids, but says there is a need for clear, accurate information about their potential harms. She says vaping devices are “a diverse product class and must not be treated as a single product.”
The discussion comes in the wake of the recent decision by the US Food an
d Drug Administration (FDA) to extend its tobacco oversight authority to e-cigarettes. The controversial FDA regulations require manufacturers to detail what is in their products and apply for marketing permission by 2018.