Calls For a Consistent Harm Reduction Approach
In a newly published Op-ed, Nicokick’s Head of Communications, Markus Lindblad, calls for a consistent harm reduction approach that prioritizes the transition away from combustible products.
Harm reduction is a strategy for smokers to use alternative nicotine products to help reduce the overall withdrawal symptoms while quitting smoking; a strategy that the FDA seems to have come to terms with in recent years. The perspective is reflected in the agency’s decision to approve Snus, a smokeless tobacco product, and IQOS, which heats tobacco instead of burning it, as modified risk products (MRTP). However, FDA regrettably also acts counterproductive to a clear harm reduction strategy.
To reduce the prevalence of smoking, smokers must be presented with attractive alternatives to encourage the switch to safer products. According to studies, this method is almost twice as likely to help smokers quit their harmful habits. Not only has the FDA denied thousands of harm reduction products based on flavor – they recently gave two combustible cigarettes their MRTP approval.
“Tobacco harm reduction has been the foundation of a series of scattered decisions by the FDA, which has yet to take clear and concise action in support of many products that would effectively reduce the number of smokers.”, Lindblad writes, while also stating that:
“[…] it is critical that the FDA recognizes that nicotine levels should not be the priority, transitioning away from combustible products should.”
Read the full article here.