Officials from the World Health Organization (WHO) are facing backlash after being accused of ignoring the science and peddling lies about the link between COVID-19 and vaping.
The claims come after the WHO overlooked the results of several global studies, instead repeating the claim that vaping can increase the risk of contracting COVID-19.
Some groups are claiming the organisation is deliberately preventing millions of smokers from accessing reduced harm alternatives because of its anti-vaping ideology.
Nancy Loucas, Executive Coordinator of The Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates (CAPHRA), said:
“For years, the WHO has created a steady stream of anti-vaping claims, which has had dire consequences for adult smokers looking to quit.
“By going down this route, the WHO has chosen to support deadly cigarette consumption over a healthier alternative and forced vaping into the waiting hands of the black market.”Nancy Loucas, CAPHRA
CAPHRA has since released a 103-page white paper, highlighting gaps in the WHO’s claims and urging them to retract their false statements about the link between vaping and the coronavirus.
“If the World Health Organization and governments globally can be so reliant on the science around COVID-19, why won’t they take the same approach to the smoking pandemic that kills someone every 10 seconds,” said a CAPHRA press release.
“This is to the detriment of the health and rights of not only smokers and consumers, but also of society as a whole, who are being negatively impacted by the disconnect between science and policy.”
Meanwhile, a new study has hit the pages of some UK news outlets, claiming that vapers have a higher likelihood of transmitting the COVID-19 virus.
“Vapers are up to 17% more likely to spread coronavirus because it gets blown around when they breathe out, a study says,” claimed a recent Daily Mail article.
However, this fails to mention that the majority of vapers only add ‘a minuscule additional risk’ to those already presented by talking and breathing, with the higher figure applying to hobbyists who use more powerful devices to generate huge clouds of vapour in confined spaces.
The researchers instead found that the use of low-powered devices by people with COVID would only increase the risk of transmission one percent more than breathing.