AMA Federal Council Passes Motion on Vaping

On 10 December 2022, AMA Federal Council passed a motion to address AMA members’ increasing concern with the uptake of e-cigarette use, or vaping, in Australia.  

The motion clarifies the AMA’s position on non-nicotine vaping products and adds to the AMA position and ongoing advocacy on all vaping products. This motion will build on the AMA’s existing position on the medical model for nicotine vaping products, and will be reflected in our response to the Therapeutic Goods Administration’s Consultation on the proposed reforms to the regulation of nicotine vaping products. 

The motion reads:  

"The AMA demands enhanced regulatory measures to curb the proliferation of recreational non-nicotine vaping products, which include but are not limited to:  

Implementing similar regulation to tobacco products, such as health warnings, better labelling, plain packaging and tobacco licences.  

A targeted Federal response to monitor and act on illegal advertising and promotion of vaping products, particularly online and on social media.  

Better enforcement of existing State and Territory regulation to help block illegal vape sales both online and through shopfronts."  

Non-nicotine vaping products are legally sold to people over the age of 18 in stores and online. However, most of these products contain nicotine, misleading customers into using an addictive product. Despite current laws, it is easy for people under the age of 18 to illegally purchase both nicotine and non-nicotine vaping products.   

Known acute health effects of vaping products include: seizures, nicotine poisoning and associated brain development issues for younger people, E-cigarette or Vaping Associated Lung Injury (EVALI), burns, cough, dizziness, and nausea. There has been an increase in vape-related calls to the Australian Poisons Information Centre, most of these calls were about children. There is also evidence that vaping triples the likelihood of taking up conventional smoking, making it a gateway to smoking.  

Vaping products are clearly marketed towards children. They come in a wide variety of flavours from different fruits, lollies, and desserts. Vape packaging is bright and colourful, and can even resemble popular juice boxes or lollies.  

The AMA will continue to advocate on this issue to stem the rapidly-growing uptake of using harmful vaping products.  

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