Schwarzenegger saves lives, and more good news

Few bits of good news out there today:

1. Smokers could get nicotine gum on NHS indefinitely.

From The Guardian, a citizen’s council (not sure at this point how much influence they actually have) is recommending that the National Health Service provide nicotine replacement products (gum or inhalers) indefinitely instead of the current guidelines of a couple of weeks.

The British Medical Association’s position stands as:

“In terms of harm reduction, effective alternatives need to be considered that allow an individual to obtain nicotine without being subjected to the risks of smoked tobacco.”

The BMA supported the use of nicotine replacement therapy products for harm reduction but said they were not licensed for long-term use and were not significantly cheaper than cigarettes.

-Good intentions and let’s hope it is adopted. This has been one of the problems with NRTs and why they are so unsuccessful for so many; that they are discontinued after such a short time. And of course, if society is on about the health costs of smoking, and in regards to how much is already spent in anti-tobacco activism, an investment in providing smokers with supplements is in relative terms quite modest. Or if you want to save even more money; make sure that e-cigarettes remain available and promote them. Smokers will even cover the cost of their own non-smoking efforts.

Which brings us to the big news story from California

2. Arnold Schwarzenegger vetos banning e-cigarettes

Once known as the Terminator, Arnold can add life saver to his list of accomplishments. Nice to see some common sense in a governor, especially one in charge of the most rabid paternalistic health activism in the Union. (See his letter here.)


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