Where does the electronic cigarette go? The opinion of doctors, associations and opinion makers

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Three simple questions to summarize the past year and to predict what will happen in 2020. Three identical questions for all the seventeen figures contacted. The result is an almost unanimous synthesis. 2019 was characterized by the lightness with which the Evali problem that broke out in the United States was reported in Europe. But at the same time also the belief that science is slowly becoming aware that the electronic cigarette is the most effective tool for quitting or reducing smoking. 2020, however, could be the year of yet another rebirth, provided that the health organizations do not go sideways as has been happening in recent weeks.

Riccardo Polosa (director Coehar)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
The presentation event of the CoEHAR projects represented for us all the most important event. Thanks to the launch of new international research projects, Italy is now the leader of research on the reduction of smoking damage. The results of our studies will allow us to better understand this sector and will certainly give decisive answers on many of the most common questions about the use of these products.

The most negative fact?
The unclear reaction of the media and public health organizations after the Evali case in the US. CoC, health authorities and the media launched an attack on the Ecig, completely losing sight of what was happening.

What do you foresee for 2020?
A change of course in the use of e-cig. A more scientific and innovative approach by the whole sector which, despite the continuous attacks from many sides, works every day to make these tools effective in the fight against smoking. I notice a common fervor in the international scientific debate. The report with which the WHO opened this 2020 clarified the lack of clarity on the part of some American organizations. In 2020, the vapors will speak. Their testimony of a healthy lifestyle rediscovered will be the clearest, most transparent and real answer that the world expects.

Fabio Beatrice (director of the anti-smoking center S. Giovanni Bosco Turin)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
The request to write a commentary which was later published as a systematic review in a prestigious American public health journal following the publication of my latest scientific paper. This is an independent pilot study in which an electronic cigarette has been used in a group of smokers who are resistant to cessation while respecting the application of the guidelines. The work aroused a lot of interest in the US despite being published when the unjustified alarm for Evali was still ongoing.

The most negative fact?
The explosion of Evali which was mistakenly attributed to the electronic cigarette. Above all, it was a media distortion of the scientific information provided by the American CDC. An unpleasant moment from the point of view of scientific merit.

What do you foresee for 2020?
I predict that the truth will emerge and that the electronic cigarette in a large part of its commercial formulations will be of great help to smokers who cannot quit smoking. I anticipate that the need to combine the policies of prohibitions with a vision of help for smokers in difficulty who otherwise will continue to get sick and die will mature in health consciousness.

Ezio Campagna (President Italian Anti-Smoking League)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
For Liaf, the World No Tobacco Day event is always a highly anticipated event. We work hard and make sure that the whole community, both digital and territorial, can participate in our activities. Every year is a different appointment and also for 2020 we are organizing an event that this time will involve even the youngest.

The most negative fact?
Read the email of a worried mom. Whenever a request for help from worried parents arrives in Liaf because the teenage children have started to smoke it is a bad thing for us. Nobody should get close to smoking, but when teenagers do it, it is always a worrying disappointment. Helping these guys to quit is our duty.

What do you foresee for 2020?
I foresee an active involvement by young people and by individual territories. A winning element to win this battle against smoking. The World Anti-Smoking Day 2020 will in fact be dedicated to the involvement of young people in the counter marketing campaigns of the multinational tobacco companies. In response to the systematic tactics, aggressive and supported by Big Tobacco, Liaf will propose a creative contest aimed at young students of second grade schools for the realization of a campaign to raise awareness of anti-smoking culture, which will compete with those carried out by numerous countries in the world.

Emanuele Ferri (TrustiCert)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
A hat-trick scored by vaping in Europe. The year opens with a video in which Mhra (analogue of our Ministry of Health) shows the population the comparative effects of smoking and vaping, while in February an independent research published in the prestigious English magazine Nejm shows that the electronic cigarette has a double efficacy in smoking cessation compared to the best pharmacological methods. In Italy, the excise duty is remodeled and the foundations are laid for a fairer market with safer products.

The most negative fact?
The overseas events. The epidemic of intoxication occurred in the US and the subsequent media manipulation that gave the coup de grace to a sector already brought to its knees by a halter regulation. With federal consumption more than halved and a picture of strong regulatory uncertainty, what was the first world vaping market is called, like the mythical phoenix, to be reborn from its ashes healthier and stronger than before.

What do you foresee for 2020?
Time and difficulties help to grow and this sector, still very young, will be a year older. The battles, sometimes very hard and dramatic, will have helped to shape it by selecting only the strongest and most capable players. Paradoxically, the strength of vaping is proportional to the strength of its enemy. As long as there is a high prevalence of smokers, vaping is expected to thrive. The global rate of smoking-related deaths in 2020 will still be above 10%, while the United Kingdom will show us results never seen before in terms of harm reduction, so I expect more wins and less losses for vaping.

Umberto Roccatti (president Anafe-Confindustria)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
The gradual return to the vaping of hundreds of thousands of people in the first half of the year following the review of taxation and the possibility of accessing vaping at normal prices.

The most negative fact?
Undoubtedly the fake news on the American deaths that have proliferated throughout September and October attributing to the electronic cigarette responsibilities that did not belong to it.

What do you foresee for 2020?
A major opposition between the WHO party of moralistic science which sees a threat to future generations and the pragmatic science party which sees the electronic cigarette as the greatest public health opportunity of the decade.

Antonella Panuzzo (Uniecig president)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
2019 in general was not a good year for vaping but we can still say that it was the year of awareness. Positive awareness, which gives serious anti-smoking policies and correct information on harm reduction, results in a substantial decrease in smokers as evidenced by the report published by the English Ministry of Health on the use of the electronic cigarette.

The most negative fact?
And here comes the negative awareness, that unlike what happens in England, institutions and lobbies in the rest of the world are hostile to vaping and every opportunity is good to deal with the electronic cigarette, creating real media cases of worldwide resonance as happened in the summer with the case concerning deaths in the USA, which were immediately attributed to the use of the electronic cigarette without specifying the improper use that had been made of it.

What do you foresee for 2020?
The forecasts for 2020 are not rosy, the road is still uphill, we will still be heavily attacked, we need constant commitment on all fronts and a union of intent but I hope to end the year by reading the good news on Sigmagazine: the vaping has won !

Johann Rossi Mason (scientific journalist)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
The statement by the British authorities regarding their public health policies and the use of alternative products as strategies for reducing risk. The Italian attitude is always rather short-sighted and does not look at the best practices of other countries. Instead, it perches on ideological positions that are good only for those who express them and certainly not for smokers who remain confused in their addiction and without clear indications on what can be useful to them.

The most negative fact?
The Evali epidemic in the United States was looking for the darkest chapter of the year but at the same time it allowed us to focus on the need for manufacturers to invest in safety and quality. It would have been an opportunity to shed some light on the world of vaping but not everyone has been able to take this opportunity.

What do you foresee for 2020?
More than a prediction, it is a wish. I hope for a more intense and rigorous scientific research activity on the world of vaping and heated tobacco products to help better understand the potential of these tools to reduce the risk borne by the various organs that can help those who can not stop with their forces.

Barbara Mennitti (specialized journalist)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
For the market, certainly the drastic reduction of the tax. From the point of view of scientific research, which I follow, two important studies: one coordinated by Peter Hajek, which proves that the electronic cigarette is twice as effective as other nicotine-based therapies for smoking cessation; the Vesuvius study, coordinated by Jacob George, which finds that smokers who switch to vaping already have important cardiovascular benefits 4 weeks after the transition.

The most negative fact?
There are not many doubts, unfortunately. The story of lung diseases and deaths in the USA, erroneously and perhaps even attributed with a little bad faith to the use of the electronic cigarette, and the consequent wave of panic and prohibitions have done enormous damage, even after it has been clarified that the problem was in illegal THC products. The report drawn up by Bloomberg for the WHO also deserves a mention.

What do you foresee for 2020?
I foresee an intensification of the efforts of the powerful interests endangered by the electronic cigarette, so much misinformation and intense battles to carry on. I also fear a little friendly fire.

Pierluigi Rossi (general secretary Anafe)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
The first months of the year, when the market thanks to finally sustainable and fairer tax legislation, was able to recover ground.

The most negative fact?
The last days of August, when the first news appeared on the spread of serious diseases in the USA due to the use of products from the illicit market.

What do you foresee for 2020?
In the electronic smoking market it is always difficult to make forecasts, without a doubt we will have to continue dialogue with the institutions to bring out clearly the great potential of e-cig in the fight against cigarette consumption, promoting the pursuit of pragmatic and not merely policies principle.

Alberto Gava (lawyer)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
The much coveted (finally) remodulation of the consumption tax, accompanied by the great tenacity and great enthusiasm of a sector that, despite the attacks of recent years, has continued to be lively and to find new areas of development that have assured it of becoming a panorama of healthy and real entrepreneurship.

The most negative fact?
The sad wave of news from the United States of America, indeed misleading or otherwise partial, which has seriously slowed down a market that otherwise would have been booming after the adversities of recent years.

What do you foresee for 2020?
I still foresee great media attention on the sector and I hope that a healthy and constructive dialogue with the authorities on health and risk reduction issues can finally be started, also in Italy.

Iacopo Annese (lawyer)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
The failure to restore the abnormal consumption tax that had been feared at some point and therefore the maintenance of the current tax.

The most negative fact?
The disinformation campaign regarding the damage resulting from smuggled liquids spread in the United States.

What do you foresee for 2020?
A cleaning of the market with consolidation on valuable products

Carmine Canino (president Anpvu)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
The attempt to separate vaping from combusted smoke through the European initiative Vaping is not tobacco. It denoted the awareness that personal vaporizers are not a substitute / surrogate for tobacco, but a reduced harm tool for the cessation of an addiction.

The most negative fact?
The exploitation of the mass media during the “Evali case” in the USA. It would be time to stop looking at America and consider that we have legislation that protects us and European excellence in the scientific medical field.

What do you foresee for 2020?
2020 will be the year of the smart vaping race widespread in tobacconists and unfortunately confused with tobacco heaters. More than anything, it is hoped that the moments of media sharing of the right message that will distinguish the use of personal vaporizers will increase.

Moses Giacomello (president Vapitaly)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
The vaping market has drastically changed its attitude in the past year, shifting its focus from consolidated vaper to potential new vapers, i.e. smokers. Perhaps it was only a self-defense move from the various crises that are facing us, but it is undoubtedly the right way.

The most negative fact?
Undoubtedly the attitude of the American institutions towards the deaths from contaminated THC liquids, but above all the uncritical attitude of their European counterparts and of politics in general who preferred to ride the citizens’ fears instead of seriously tackling the problem.

What do you foresee for 2020?
There are two crisis factors for the new year. The first concerns the expiration of the famous FDA Premarket Authorization which, in fact, will deliver the vaping market to the hands of Big Tobacco and any very few companies that will be able to afford to spend the tens of millions necessary to overcome it, finally making the real goals clear. of that organization. The second point of crisis concerns the position of the WHO which, although scientifically “dismantled” since the first day of its publication, will constitute a “comfortable blanket” for all those institutions that in recent years have never done or financed a single research. scientific and will use this position to justify their increasingly restrictive positions. I speak of course of the Directorate General for Health at European level and of the Higher Institute of Health.

Phil Busardo (opinion maker)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
Honestly, I struggle to find positive things. With any luck, you will ask me the same question next year and I hope to find something for 2020.

The most negative fact?
The worst event of 2019 has nothing to do with our way of vaping, but clearly has had an impact on the whole industry. Of course I mean the vaping-related deaths in the United States.

What do you foresee for 2020?
Unfortunately, I expect that in 2020 we will see the same reinforced script again. Vaping is a disruptive technology that is eating the income of some very important actors: Big Tobacco and Big Pharma.

The Santone dello Svapo (opinion maker)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
All collaborations, new or consolidated, with other personalities on the web and with Vapitaly.

The most negative fact?
The Italian political situation in general and immediately after the attacks on the sector from the United States.

What do you foresee for 2020?
I believe there will be a market regrowth but also some changes.

Danielino77 (opinion maker)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
The umpteenth year of live together with Ivanzeta in which we made healthy information and gave opinions that have helped thousands of people. I stress Ivanzeta, who together with me is one of the salient personalities of the Vaping sector in Italy.

The most negative fact?
The way in which the information world in Italy has benefited from the news on e-cigarettes in the USA, all inclusive, none excluded.

What do you foresee for 2020?
The almost total absence of new vapors resulting from the total lack of both advertising and information promulgation

Elisa Tagliani (communication agency Taglianigruppoadv)
What do you remember with more pleasure than 2019?
Of this 2019 I remember, despite the strong attacks received on the sector, the tenacity of a market that has expressed itself with an important presence thanks to national and international players who participated in the Vapitaly. Entrepreneurs who have thus shown that they believe a lot and therefore invest a lot in this market.

The most negative fact?
I certainly remember the strong attack on the sector, but above all the consequent disinformation carried out by the generalist media which, in many cases have sinned with great superficiality. I also remember the arrogance of some international players who, in spite of the regulations, using their economic power, have carried out communication campaigns with the consequent restitution of a negative image even of those who belong to the sector and have always respected the rules .

What do you foresee for 2020?
Making a prediction is difficult since we are at the mercy of governments that alternate phases of “momentum” and “stop” to the sector. Certainly, thanks to the mature approach of the companies in the sector, I foresee a growth in the vaping market with the help of professionals who increasingly want to invest and know both the effectiveness and the limits of this product. An example above all is the new campaign that Anafe in collaboration with Liaf is carrying out, expressing with great irony a solution for the reduction of smoke damage.



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https://www.sigmagazine.it/2020/01/esperti-ecig/

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