Nicotine prescriptions ARE legal in Queensland

Discussion in 'Research, Health and Legal' started by The Vaper, Jul 9, 2018.

  1. The Vaper

    The Vaper I Vape ∴ I Am

    Jun 15, 2015
    Sydney 2016
    It is legal to import nicotine into Queensland
    Posted by Colin on July 9, 2018

    Queensland vapers can now be reassured that it is legal to import and use nicotine e-liquid if holding a prescription.

    Queensland Health has misled the public for several years by insisting that state laws (HDPR 1996) override Commonwealth legislation, making it illegal under any circumstances to import or possess nicotine.

    After repeated challenges by ATHRA, Queensland Health has now admitted that importation of nicotine to stop smoking is legal under the TGA Personal Importation Scheme (see below). Vapers need a prescription from their doctor to qualify.

    Misinformation and intimidation
    Queensland Health has intercepted personal nicotine imports and threatened and intimidated vapers for several years. For example, below is letter from Qld Health to a vaper last year advising that their nicotine order was confiscated and threatening a $9,752 fine. There have been many similar confiscations of legally purchased products.


    Queensland Health has also intimidated doctors in the past stating that it is illegal for a doctor to prescribe nicotine e-liquid to help a smoker quit. They have also advised that it is illegal for interstate vapers to visit Queensland with nicotine for personal use.

    There was an episode in 2016 in which a regular vape meeting was cancelled after threats by Qld Health and the Qld police. The group, Brisvape had 1,600 members and met monthly in Brisbane to discuss vaping and share information.

    Qld Health still has on its website here that (9 July 2018):

    This is misleading. Under the TGA Personal importation scheme it is legal to import, possess and use nicotine e-liquid for quitting smoking.

    Qld Health even asks the public to dob-in-a-vaper and report ‘possession of electronic cigarettes containing liquid nicotine’whether the vaper has a prescription or not.

    What is the TGA Personal Importation Scheme?
    The TGA Personal Importation Scheme is a federal government scheme under which Australians can legally import goods for treatment (such as nicotine e-liquid) which are otherwise not approved in Australia. Under the scheme, it is legal to import 3 months’ supply of nicotine for personal use if prescribed by a doctor for quitting or reducing smoking. It is also legal to possess and use the nicotine e-liquid.

    The Personal Importation Scheme applies in all states and territories in Australia.

    Why is it important?
    Electronic cigarettes with nicotine are being used as a safer alternative to smoking tobacco by many Queenslanders who have been unable to quit smoking with conventional treatments.

    Switching to vaping leads to substantial health improvements and can be life-saving. According to the UK Royal College of Physicians, long-term vaping is at least 95% safer than smoking. Millions of smokers have quit overseas by switching to vaping.

    Vapers whose nicotine supplies are confiscated or are intimidated into not vaping are at high risk of relapse to smoking.
    jslJustin, KayP, Noe and 3 others like this.
  2. Rayjay

    Rayjay Senior Member

    Jul 29, 2017
    Duck River NW Tasmania
    Similar in Tasmania but the enforcers don't give a shit. They harras B&m shops 3 afaik but a Vaper walking down the street no one cares what they vape. I have seen people walking through town even smoking a joint.

    Sent from my SM-A520F using Tapatalk
    emu and Snidely_Whiplash like this.
  3. emu

    emu Senior Member

    Aug 31, 2015
    Chorkerup Rd W.A
    Fucking arseholes
    Rayjay likes this.
  4. The Vaper

    The Vaper I Vape ∴ I Am

    Jun 15, 2015
    Sydney 2016
    Vapers targeted in Queensland Health crackdown
    by Helen Spelitis

    10th Jul 2018 10:30 AM | Updated: 10:46 AM
    Subscriber only

    HEALTH authorities are targeting people who vape as an alternative to smoking harmful tobacco.

    Threatening letters have been sent to people from Queensland Health, stating products have been seized at the border along with warnings that importing liquid containing nicotine could attract a $10,000 fine.

    It's a hot issue for some in the medical profession who are calling for nicotine liquid used in electronic cigarettes to legalised - an idea opposed by Queensland Health.

    Vaping is the practice inhaling and exhaling vapour created by an electronic cigarette, filled with flavoured liquid. Not all liquids contain nicotine.

    In Queensland, nicotine liquid is considered a poison and only those with a prescription, or licence, are legally entitled to possess the product.

    The Sunshine State was the first state in Australia to include electronic cigarettes in tobacco cigarettes laws, in 2015.

    Associate Professor in the School of Public Health and Community Medicine at the University of New South Wales Dr Colin Mendelsohn is scathing about the Queensland Health approach.

    He said vaping using nicotine liquid was an important tool for people to quit smoking more harmful tobacco and the products should be made available to encourage people to give up smoking.

    Camira mum-of-three Storm Maxwell runs a vaping meet up group and owns a business producing nicotine-free liquid for electronic cigarettes. An ex-smoker herself, Storm can't understand why Queensland Health is spending time and money targeting vapers. Cordell Richardson
    "People who are trying to quit smoking are being frightened by Queensland Health," Dr Mendelsohn, who is also chairman of the charity Australian Tobacco Harm Reduction Association and a prominent campaigner on the issue, said.

    "Vaping is a life-saving harm reduction option for people who are addicted and can't quit."

    Vaping has been accepted in other countries, including New Zealand where nicotine liquid was legalised in May.

    Across Australia, the laws and fines differ across states with New South Wales the least harsh.

    "Nicotine is not the enemy, combustible tobacco is," Dr Mendelsohn said.

    "I have seen so many people unable to quit and repeatedly come back. They've tried the Champix (stop smoking aid tablets), they've tried patches and nothing works. This works.

    "If you can help a person quit smoking that's the most important health intervention they'll ever have in your life."

    In 2016 there were 450,000 adult daily smokers in the state, according to Queensland Health, representing 12% of the population.

    Since 1998, Queensland Health has launched a large number of campaigns to encourage people to quit.


    A Queensland Health spokesperson said that e-cigarettes presented a risk and could encourage people, particularly young people, to take up smoking or could make smoking appear more socially acceptable.  

    "People seeking to access unapproved products containing liquid nicotine for therapeutic use can only do so under the Special Access Scheme or the Personal Importation Scheme of the Therapeutic Goods Administration," the spokesperson said. 

    "Under these schemes, the prescribing doctor would need to follow requirements prescribed by the Therapeutic Goods Administration." 

    Queensland Health's concerns are shared by Australia's peak medical body, the Australian Medical Association.

    AMA President Dr Tony Bartone said electronic cigarettes had the potential to normalise smoking without addressing the issue that "tobacco smoking has significan health consequences".

    "The products that are used sometimes contain harmful carcinogens, and we do not have the long-term data about the risk profile of them. We know that there are carcinogens of at least certain toxicity and the ultimate effect has yet to be proven," Dr Bartone said.

    "When the evidence comes through and it can be shown to be a therapeutic aid to cessation from smoking, that's when we will sit down and significantly look at our position and move in line with the evidence that's presented."

    Anyone found to be in unlawful possession and use of liquid nicotine in Queensland could face a maximum penalty of $10,400.

    Storm Maxwell, 35, Camira resident Cordell Richardson
    'Why are they making our lives miserable?': Mum feels targeted

    MUM Storm Maxwell can't understand why Queensland Health is targeting vapers.

    She runs a business producing nicotine-free liquid for electronic cigarettes and also hosts meet ups for the vaping community.

    The 35-year-old Camira mum of three used to be a heavy smoker.

    When her grandmother died from emphysema, Storm decided to give the habit up.

    She used an electronic cigarette as a stop smoking aid and has been tobacco free ever since.

    "I had been smoking since I was 19," Storm said.

    "It started with 20 cigarettes a week and by the time I quit, that was up to 40 a day."

    Even though Storm isn't doing anything illegal, she feels targeted.

    "I honestly don't know why they are so keen on making our lives miserable," she said.

    In 2016, a vape meet up at Rocklea was cancelled when Storm was told the police intended to raid the meeting.

    More than 100 people regularly attended the meetings.

    Since then, the attention on the illegal use of nicotine has ramped up, Storm said, and members of her group are afraid of being targeted.

    "We don't sell or promote the use of products with nicotine," Storm said.

    "In our group, we try to make sure people understand the rules.

    "The government wants people to stop smoking and we've found a safe way to do it."

    There are 136 inspectors working for Queensland Health tracking the importation and illegal sale of drugs and poisons, including nicotine.

    The threatening letters sent by Queensland Health have been received by people Storm knows.

    In one letter, shared with the QT, Queensland Health says it has seized products imported online from New Zealand.

    The specific liquid in this instance was menthol flavoured liquid, containing 3mg of nicotine, and an apple flavoured liquid also containing 3mg of nicotine.

    "A sample of the products seized will be submitted to Queensland Health Forensic Scientific Services for analysis," the letter reads.

    "You have the opportunity to supply evidence (in writing within 7 days) to this office, that you have an endorsement (for example a licence issued to you by Queensland Health) under the regulation to lawfully obtain and possess this substance in Queensland."

    Do you need help quitting?

    Visit Queensland Health's QUIT HQ website for more information or call QUIT line on 13 7848.
    KayP and RC. like this.
  5. margyb

    margyb Great Balls of Fire

    Jun 11, 2015
    Lindisfarne Tasmania
    Looks like the author Helens mum switched from smoking to vaping

    OPINION: Vaping saved my mother
    Helen Spelitis
    VAPING saves lives.

    For as long as I could remember, my mother smoked. She started in the 70s when smoking was cool.

    About three years ago she managed to quit after a friend introduced her to using e-cigarettes, known as vaping.

    At first she used liquid with nicotine in it, a product that is actually illegal in Queensland and can attract a $10,400 fine.

    For my family, the 'vape stick' as we called it, was a comfort. My mother could still consume nicotine without smoking, so it became like a safety blanket to help her move away from cigarettes.

    A few months after starting to use the nicotine liquid, she moved to a liquid without nicotine and then slowly phased that out too.

    Now she barely vapes at all and has never looked back at her decision to quit smoking.

    She has saved thousands of dollars, which she puts in a separate account to remind her how expensive smoking can be.

    I couldn't say how many times I talked to my mum about quitting, and I honestly didn't think she ever would quit.

    Today I'm so proud of her for improving her health and kicking a habit that had her so addicted.

    Could she have done it without the nicotine liquid?

    I don't think so.
  6. Snidely_Whiplash

    Snidely_Whiplash Member

    Jun 13, 2015
    Lurking in the shadows behind you
    From Qld Health

    Concerns about the use of e-cigarettes

    There are numerous questions around the safety of e-cigarettes. There are concerns that they:

    Encourage smoking
    There is potential for e-cigarettes to continue to further nicotine addiction or tobacco product use and may renormalise the act of smoking. The appeal of flavoured e-cigarettes to children and adolescents is also of concern.

    Deliver unreliable doses of nicotine
    Dangerous and lethal doses of nicotine can be absorbed through the skin. Nicotine is a poison and can cause serious injury and death.

    Ok let's dissect this load of something rocking horses really don't do.

    "further nicotine addiction" ...
    Why is that a bad thing, nicotine is not the elephant in the room, burning tobacco in a cigarette is.

    "or tobacco product" ...
    Again tobacco is not the elephant in the room, burning tobacco in a cigarette is.

    "renormalise the act of smoking" ...
    Smoking has not been de-normalised, between 1 in 5 to 1 in 10 of the population smoking, is not de-normalisation.
    Stop moving the goal posts to suit your arguments.

    "The appeal of flavoured e-cigarettes to children and adolescents" ...
    So why do we have 18 years old restrictions on an ever enlarging list of products.
    As if the the cops don't have enough already to do.

    "Deliver unreliable doses of nicotine" ...
    Not from regulated sources.
    Think it might be a good idea to allow the regulated sources, to drive the others off the market?

    "Dangerous and lethal doses of nicotine can be absorbed through the skin" ...
    Only if I dive into a tub of very high concentrated nicotine, & stay under till I drown.

    "Nicotine is a poison and can cause serious injury and death" ...
    So can;

    1. Liquid laundry detergent,
    2. Laundry bleach,
    3. Perfume,
    4. Girls lock up your lippie, it's a big killer,
    5. Dish washing detergent,
    6. Water in unreasonably high doses can drown you.

    The continued attack on Big Tobacco, tobacco, nicotine, e-cigs, heat not burn, snus, etc.
    Is moving the focus off cigarettes, thus stringing out how long it will take to get rid of them.
    This will shorten the life of many cigarette smokers,
    & pay off the mortgages of many in the Anti-Smoking industry.

    Last edited: Jul 11, 2018
    KayP, Noe, RC. and 2 others like this.
  7. The Vaper

    The Vaper I Vape ∴ I Am

    Jun 15, 2015
    Sydney 2016
    Further to that, the definition of addiction presumes harm. Where is the harm (sans overdose)?
    Self titration. I recall a guy being given some 'e-liquid' by a friend. He said it was harsh, tasteless and gave him a headache, so he didn't use much of it. Turns out it was 100 mg nicotine with no flavoring.

    Having said that, regulated sources is a good idea.
    KayP, RC., Rayjay and 2 others like this.
  8. Rayjay

    Rayjay Senior Member

    Jul 29, 2017
    Duck River NW Tasmania
    I have no problem with the idea of regulated sources of nicotine e-juice. I have had no problem with Nicopharm's e-juice except for the bottles it used to come in; having to use a syringe to fill tanks. The whole issue is that the powers at be in Australia do not want this product for several reasons:

    1. E-Cigarettes/ Vapes is a Chinese invention and it seems from some conversations I have had with some smokers they do not trust the Chinese, one bright spark said to me that e-cigarettes were the Chinese revenge on the opium trade the Europeans inflicted on Chine back in the 1800's

    To a degree I tend to agree with that statement judging by some of the crap I have received from China when it comes to e-juice ONLY and there are only two trusted vendors in China that I will have anything to do with.

    2. There is far too much money (Shares) invested in Big Tobacco and Big Pharma and those holding those shares certainly do not want to see those share prices drop.

    Public Health when it comes to money of investors is on the back burner, no matter what Bill Shorten or that scum the current PM or his Health Minister says.

    No matter who you vote for Politicians have a certain policy when it comes to election promises:

    1. There are promises they intend to keep
    2. There are promises they might keep
    3. There are promises they never intended or will keep

    Trust a politician?.........Sure Can't! No matter what party or independent you vote for! The preference distribution pisses me right off. I vote for the person not whoever the c...t gives his preferences too.
  9. Snidely_Whiplash

    Snidely_Whiplash Member

    Jun 13, 2015
    Lurking in the shadows behind you

    No, China grows half the worlds tobacco.
    Cigarettes are their weapon of choice.
    Rayjay likes this.
  10. Snidely_Whiplash

    Snidely_Whiplash Member

    Jun 13, 2015
    Lurking in the shadows behind you
    Not quite, it's the party executive branch that are accepting the bribes.

    Why buy a politician, (which is against the law & you both can get busted)?
    When you buy the executive branch of both sides of the house, with political donations.

    reason for editing: Added more words of wisdom
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2018
    Rayjay likes this.

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