When the TGA made the move in October to formalize the Prescription model on liquid Nicotine, there were several commitments made that we now see have failed or under performed, to name but a few:
- Make Nicotine products available through Australian pharmacies
- Educate General Practitioners (GP’s) on effective prescribing of liquid nicotine
- Effectively monitor international imports to ensure all Nicotine products would be assessed for a valid Prescription and subject to personal import rules
- Capture and disposal of commercial quantities of illegal Disposable vapes entering the country.
- Anecdotal stories from a flurry of legitimate Brick and Mortar stores say that illegal accessibility to Nicotine Disposable vapes has not dropped and has increased in availability.
- GP’s are more confused than ever on how to appropriately prescribe Nicotine, leading to more people either being prescribed the wrong product, or going to the black market for Disposable vapes.
- Liquid Nicotine is proving difficult to source locally through pharmacies, if at all.
Wait, that sounds like Prohibition! Restrict access through legitimate channels, the black market thrives.
What has this all created?
- Increased local access to unregulated Illegal Nicotine products, which are landing in the hands of Minors.
- No repercussions for questionable businesses that actively break the law, while they rake in huge profits.
- Legitimate Vape businesses who started with the purpose of effectively assisting smokers find a safer alternative, stuck in the middle:
Damned if you do (sell nicotine)
Damned if you don’t (lost sales due to compliance with imposed nicotine laws)