Australian Vapers Urged to Get Doctors Prescriptions Ahead of New E-Cig Laws

Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), is urging local vapers to book doctors appointments to get prescriptions for their vaping products, before the new import ban kicks in.

Last year, Australia’s Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt had announced a new measure banning the importation of vape liquid containing nicotine. A few months later the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) announced their final decision on the measure, “..the importation of nicotine e-cigarettes and liquid nicotine for vaping will require a doctor’s prescription.”

“Purchase of nicotine vaping products from other Australian sources is already not permitted and will remain illegal.”

To this effect, as of October 2021, vapers in Australia will only be able to purchase vaping products from pharmacies via prescription. While retailers in neighbouring New Zealand and most other countries are able to responsibly sell nicotine products over the counter, anyone caught violating Australia’s harsh regulations will face steep fines, and in some cases even imprisonment.

To this effect, the TGA is reminding all vapers to get their vape prescriptions before October. “Purchase of nicotine vaping products from other Australian sources is already not permitted and will remain illegal,” the TGA said in guidance documents released last month.

“These changes balance the need to prevent adolescents and young adults from taking up nicotine vaping (and potentially smoking), while enabling current smokers to readily access these products for smoking cessation with appropriate medical advice.”

Violators to face harsh fines
Last month, a TGA spokeswoman explained that violations on the new restrictions may result in civil penalties and fines “up to 5,000 penalty units for an individual – up to $1,110,000 – and 50,000 penalty units for a corporation – up to $11,100,000”.

“The TGA will revise the list in Schedule 1 to TGO 110 if and when more evidence becomes available showing that other ingredients used in nicotine vaping products carry demonstrable health risks associated with inhalation,” added the TGA spokeswoman.

Moreover, new quality standards’ regulations specify that the products must not contain any active ingredients other than nicotine, and also detail set labeling and packaging rules, including warnings to keep the goods out of reach of children. “The standard includes requirements related to labeling (e.g. warnings and nicotine content), packaging (child resistant closures), ingredients and contaminants.”