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INTERVIEW WITH KELLIE FORBES

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KELLIE FORBES

Kellie is a Canadian Registered Nurse Bscn and author of the “Vaping, The Truth” report.

 

Kellie, you have supported the MOVE statement; Why?

My opinion on vaping is solely based on my research on THR studies, surveys & articles. The MOVE statement concurs with my opinion on every point. We as healthcare professionals have an ethical responsibility to remain current in credible evidence to provide an informed opinion on matters of health to our communities. I believe that MOVE is adhering to that responsibility

Kellie, you are the author of “Vaping, The Truth”, Why you decided to write this excellent report?

Well thank you for your kind words. As an RN I am trained to identify gaps in knowledge. We are also trained how to facilitate learning to improve health outcomes. I saw a gap in knowledge of THR in the general population, healthcare professionals & politicians. This is concerning because understanding THR is essential to the application. WIthout application the public cannot benefit. So I decided to compile my research into a paper to use as a teaching tool. To appeal to the general population I wrote it in simple language, included lots of colour & kept the content concise. To appeal to healthcare professionals I included several graphs & 52 references to further their learning.

As a nurse you have treated patients suffering for the effects of smoking. Do you think that health authorities should prescribe the eCig as a harm reduction tool? Are the eCig as effective or more than other smoking cessation therapies?

In my opinion the evidence clearly indicates that vaping is an appealing alternative for smokers without the thousands of pathogenic chemicals produced when burning today’s additive laden cigarette tobacco. I do not believe they should be prescribed but should be recommended by healthcare professionals. These products contain pharmaceutical nicotine in controlled dosage just like NRTs. NRTs are OTC products as should be vape products so they are easily accessible to facilitate compliance. Consider that tobacco  kills 2 out of 3 users, causes chronic disease, has no dosage of nicotine, does not require a prescription & is available for purchase 24 hours a day.

Controlled clinical trials have concluded that smoking cessation rates with vaporizers more than triples that of NRTs (21% vs 6% at six months). Vaping increases nicotine serum levels resulting in a reduction of craving to smoke tobacco. Furthermore, it uniquely satisfies the ritualistic behaviours & mimics the internal sensations of smoking. Science clearly indicates  that the physical action of smoking is a significant aspect of the addiction. Furthermore, those that dual use report a 40% reduction of their tobacco smoking. There is a direct correlation between the number of cigarettes smoked & the risk of lung cancer. I don’t think you  need a degree to figure out that a reduction of pathogenic chemicals entering the body reduces the risk of disease.


Finally, what do you think about the WHO official position and other eCig detractors? Do you think that restrictive policies on electronic cigarettes could long term damage the public health?

I am dismayed with the position of WHO. Like I said earlier, my opinion is based solely on scientific published articles. I, a lone RN, in my home, accessed medical data bases, read the dozens articles & formed an opinion based solely on the science of THR. Quite honestly,  after I completed my research & reviewed the positions of WHO, Health Canada, Canadian non-profit organizations & our healthcare agencies I was literally heartbroken. I suppose I was naive to believe that the agencies created long ago to champion for human rights & the application of science to improve population health outcomes were adhering to the ethical standards under which they were created. The efficacy & safety of vaping is overwhelmingly blatant especially when compared to tobacco smoking.

I am afraid for the people of the world. Who will advocate for the greater good of all peoples?  What are the actual agendas of those managing these organizations?  It is clearly evident that allowing science to guide their decision making processes is questionable at best. I think that once the public understands the truth, for those suppressing this THR strategy, their credibility will come under scrutiny. My hope is that the majority of the people within these agencies, the compassionate, ethical professionals I have the privilege of working with will be able to rectify the current situation. I believe the vast majority of healthcare professionals adhere to our ethical responsibilities of non-maleficence, beneficence, justice & autonomy. There is power in numbers.

Restrictive policies of utilizing vaporizers as a tobacco harm reduction strategy promote harm induction. Period.

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INTERVIEW WITH DR. CARLOS GUTIERREZ.

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INTENSIVIST (CRITICAL CARE PHYSICIAN)

*****Doctor, why did you sign the MOVE statement?

There are several reasons why I signed, but among them are these two:
I resent the tortuous manipulations that are being applied to electronic cigarettes for purely financial reasons, and without the provision of any serious scientific study as a basis for the attacks and false information being used to confuse the public.
I am totally convinced that the vaporiser is not only an alternative to smoking, but is currently the most effective method for people to stop smoking permanently.

*****So, do you think that encouragement of the correct use of eCigs could be a definitive solution to the problem of smoking?

For now, and until we have something that exceeds eCigs in terms of effectiveness, I have no doubt. This is why eCigs are being overwhelmingly attacked – tobacco taxes are, for governments, a strong argument in this ‘war’.
There are many thousands of vapers who vape for the pleasure of vaping and who have gradually decreased their nicotine concentration to zero. Governments would have no way to recover lost tobacco revenues even via exorbitant taxes on nicotine.
It is a government folly to only take into account savings on long term therapies, hospital stays and pensions, and ignore the pain, suffering and sickness that these devices could prevent.

*******We noticed that you are a vaper, why did you start vaping?

I was a heavy smoker, smoking 50-55 tobacco cigarettes per day, or 15 packs a week. I started smoking when I was 14, and continued for 42 years.
A few years ago I had a total occlusion of the right and circumflex coronary arteries, which could not be repaired by angioplasty (I nearly died in one of three attempts to position a vascular stent. My heart stopped for almost two minutes).
Imagine that picture, and yet I still smoked a pack a day, hiding it from my wife and son. I had daily episodes of angina which were alleviated with sublingual nitroglycerin. Even the slightest effort would bring on an attack. Just climbing the stairs to my room would cause dyspnoea.
It was vital that I stopped smoking tobacco. I started with a whole string of quit attempts (traditional and alternative) including patches, medication, gum, hypnosis and acupuncture.
My colleagues at the hospital said I was a hopeless case.
And still I smoked.
My echocardiogram and chest radiography were a real fright.
Suddenly I found vaping and as if by miracle, after the first puff of a high nicotine eCig I never smoked again. I gave up smoking without any effort, I do not miss it and I have suffered no anxiety or weight gain.

******Have you noticed any improvement in your health since you switched from smoking tobacco to using an eCig?

The episodes of angina disappeared (although my extensive daily medication, forced retirement and change of lifestyle have no doubt contributed to that, make no mistake).
I no longer suffer from dyspnoea from small tasks, only when greater efforts are required, such as climbing a hill.
My heart has sustained injury and has diminished capacity, but apart from that I am able to do more and my quality of life has improved 500%.

******How long have you been using an eCig?

For five years now…how time flies!

******That makes you the living proof on the use of eCigs in relation to chronic smoking related disease. What do the doctors who have treated you think?

Since you say so…yes. I am living proof that the use of eCigs has not only not worsened my condition, but against all of the odds my health has improved markedly in terms of my ability to function and my breathing capacity.
The doctors who are treating me are unable to explain my improvement, and although they are sceptical about eCigs, they are at least no longer hostile towards them.

******What is your conclusion doctor?

The electronic cigarette is the perfect and most effective method to quit smoking, despite what the ill-informed and isolated WHO, Governments and those who are less than honest about the studies may think. I say so strongly, because at least in my case, it saved my life.