Earlier this year, the Pennsylvania Medical Society (PAMED) applauded CVS Caremark when the company announced that they would be taking tobacco off their shelves by Oct. 1. CVS accomplished this goal one month early and they are now tobacco free.
It’s a move PAMED President Bruce MacLeod, MD, says sends a strong statement 50 years after the surgeon general first warned consumers that smoking is not good for your health.
“The evidence is clear and incontrovertible that tobacco has detrimental health effects which burden people and society,” said Dr. MacLeod. “Any efforts to limit access to tobacco products should be applauded and supported.”
Several media outlets also have reported that CVS is no longer carrying e-cigarettes.
PAMED is advocating for state legislation to establish the same safeguards for e-cigarettes as those that currently exist for tobacco cigarettes, including banning sales to minors.
Senate Bill 1055 is in line with policy adopted at PAMED’s 2013 House of Delegates to reach this goal.
Enrique Hernandez, MD, a member of the board of directors of the American Cancer Society and a PAMED board member, 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.”
Read more in this week’s Weekly Capitol Update blog, written by Angela Boateng, PAMED’s regulatory counsel.