The Pennsylvania Medical Society (PAMED) applauds CVS Caremark, who announced in early February that they will be taking tobacco off of their shelves.
“It’s a move that sends a strong statement 50 years after the surgeon general first warned consumers that smoking is not good for your health,” said Bruce MacLeod, MD, president of PAMED, in a recent statement.
“But, the battle should not stop there,” he said, because electronic cigarettes are becoming more and more popular and a threat to our country’s younger generation.
PAMED is advocating for the state to pass legislation establishing the same safeguards that currently exist for tobacco cigarettes, including banning sales to minors. Encourage your legislators to vote yes when Senate Bill 1055 comes up for a vote in their chamber.
SB 1055 is in line with policy adopted at PAMED’s 2013 annual meeting to urge the state legislature to pass laws treating electronic cigarettes the same as tobacco cigarettes.
Enrique Hernandez, MD, a member of the board of directors at the American Cancer Society and a trustee on PAMED’s board, believes CVS’ decision to stop selling cigarettes is an important one to build healthier communities.
“The statistics are alarming,” said Dr. Hernandez, “And now we have people who have never smoked tobacco before taking their first puffs on an electronic one.”
“CVS sent a strong message about tobacco,” said Dr. MacLeod. “Now they can send an even stronger message by never selling an electronic cigarette unless the FDA recognizes this product for smoking-cessation therapy and applies appropriate regulations.”