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Health professionals

Smoking is the most preventable cause of morbidity and mortality in Canada.1

We would like to help you make informed decisions about tobacco harm reduction.

 

Optimal patient care

If you are a health professional, you have chosen a caring profession that gives you the responsibility to advise your patients with accurate information to improve their health outcomes.2 You are trusted by the public, authorities and your colleagues to communicate relevant information and you rely on your sources to provide you with current, unbiased and credible evidence3.

Undoubtedly, you care for and treat patients that are hopelessly addicted to cigarette smoke. As much as you communicate the devastating health effects of smoking and witness the patients’ resulting decline, they are powerless and you are frustrated that they can’t quit4.

If cessation of high risk behaviours (in this case cigarette smoking) is not happening, the next best strategy is harm reduction3. Would you want to know if your current best educated advice for smokers is actually causing great harm? We invite to look at the credible evidence to ensure best practice.

Section 1

Smoking

Before you can understand the relevance of harm reduction you first must understand what is causing harm5. Learn about what goes into cigarettes, the constituents of the smoke, and the social cost.

Section 2

The current context

Since summer of 2019, the media, health-related nonprofits, regulatory agencies and health authorities have been repeating the same congruent narratives about vaping without debate nor deviation. The current discourse about harm reduction omits significant data6.

Section 3

Tobacco harm reduction

Vaping has been thoroughly studied in labs and in real life context. A search on a medical data base resulted in over 22,000 published articles. We take you through the 10 most common myths about vaping and link you to more evidence.

Section 4

Bioethics

In this section we challenge health professionals to apply bioethics to the current context. Health professionals care about their patients’ outcomes and are required to advocate for change when current practice is causing harm3.

Section 5

Vaping Advocacy and Education Project Inc.

For 4 years VAEP, a Canadian nonprofit, has been reviewing the evidence and producing open source learning tools to facilitate informed decision making about tobacco harm reduction. In this section, we link you to more of our resources to your further knowledge.

1. Health Canada. (2014). Health concerns: Notice of proposed order to amend the schedule to the Tobacco Act.

2. Canadian Nurses Association. (2017). Code of ethics for registered nurses.

3. Canadian Nurses Association. (2018). Harm reduction and substance use: Joint position statement.

4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2010). A report of the surgeon general: How tobacco smoke causes disease: What it means to you.

5. Canadian Nurses Association. (2017). Harm reduction and illicit substance use: Implications for nursing.

6. Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol and other Drugs. (2020). Miscommunication about the causes of the US outbreak of lung diseases in vapers by public health authorities and the media.