According to reports, the Australian Senate has set up a special committee on tobacco harm reduction, which will investigate the tobacco industry with the aim of investigating “tobacco reduction strategies”.
In recent years, Australia has been known for its unreasonable stance on tobacco harm reduction (THR). Last July, Australia’s federal health minister, Greg Hunt, announced talks with the country’s border forces to ban the import of nicotine containing e-cigarette liquids. The measure will take effect on July 1, and anyone who violates it will be fined $220000.
This proposal naturally aroused the anger of thr experts and e-cigarette advocates. To this end, many organizations and entities, including 28 members of Parliament, have taken action. Australian Senator Matthew Canavan and Congressman Christensen have petitioned to overturn the import ban and legalize and regulate nicotine.
In response to these actions, health minister Greg Hunt decided to postpone the ban for six months, at least giving e-cigarette users a grace period to find alternative smoking cessation aids. But if the ban goes into effect without amendment, although technically, e-cigarette users can still get nicotine e-liquids through doctors’ prescriptions, in fact, not many people can manage it.
At present, under the influence of current laws and misconceptions, most doctors are no longer willing to write nicotine prescriptions. Therefore, given the complex and time-consuming requirements of the new measures to be developed, fewer doctors would prefer to prescribe.
The Commission will also study ways to reduce smoking and smoking among young people in Australia.
Fortunately, after many calls from public health experts, local authorities agreed to establish a task force on tobacco hazard reduction to explore “tobacco reduction strategies”, including e-cigarettes.
The Commission will analyse strategies that have been successfully adopted in other countries, such as the UK and New Zealand, and how they affect tobacco and nicotine use. The selected committee members will also study how Australia can reduce smoking and smoking among young people and submit a final report setting out the findings by December 1, 2020.