More restrictions needed on access to liquid nicotine

20 Nov 2020

An interim decision to make nicotine for use in e-cigarettes available in Australia, but only with a doctor’s prescription, will help make vaping products harder to access, Dr Khorshid said this week. 

Appearing before a Senate inquiry into reducing tobacco harm, Dr Khorshid cautioned that Big Tobacco was behind moves to make vaping widely accessible, normalising smoking among people who have never smoked cigarettes. 

“The evidence that vaping is effective as a quit smoking aid is inconclusive, but there is plenty of evidence that it causes harm,” Dr Khorshid said. 

“Multiple studies show that vaping can lead to previous non-smokers taking up tobacco smoking, and that people using vaping as a quit aid are significantly more likely to still be vaping after a year than people using nicotine patches or other therapies.” 

While doctors can already prescribe nicotine, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) estimates that only about 10 doctors in Australia currently do so. 

The AMA submission to the TGA is available here.