Last December, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), confirmed that EVALI, the infamous “vape related” lung disease that has sadly spread across the US, was caused by Vitamin E Acetate Oil. This compound was mainly found in illicit THC Vaping Cartridges purchased on the blackmarket.
In line with these findings, the current analysis has found that cases of EVALI were most commonly found in states where consumers do not have legal access to recreational marijuana dispensaries.
States in which recreational marijuana is legal had an average of 1.7 EVALI cases per million population, while there were 8.8 cases per million population, in states that have legalized medical marijuana.
“Our results are suggestive that those in recreational marijuana states may be less likely to purchase illegal marijuana products on the black market,” said Dr. Alex Hollingsworth, assistant professor in the O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University and co-author of the JAMA Network Open study.
To conduct their analysis, Hollingsworth and his colleagues reviewed data on the reported EVALI cases by state, and compared them to estimates of the prevalence of e-cigarette use by state in 2017. This was done via the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System and estimates of state populations in 2017 from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results database.
The researchers found that states in which recreational marijuana is legal, had an average of 1.7 EVALI cases per million population, while there were 8.8 cases per million population, in states that have legalized medical marijuana. Meanwhile, in states where marijuana use is still prohibited both medically and recreationally, there were an average of 8.1 EVALI cases per million population.
Recreational marijuana states having 7.1 fewer cases of EVALI per million
These figures equated to recreational marijuana states having 7.1 fewer cases of EVALI per million population, than medical marijuana states and 6.4 fewer cases per million population than prohibition states.
This study confirms what public health experts have been pointing out for years. Prohibition does not work, regulating sensibly does! Data from around the globe have indicated that consumers’ response to making products unavailable, is normally turning to contraband versions bought on the black market. This is even more so the case in minors, who as an age group are more inclined to experiment and engage in risky behaviour.
Read Further: UPI
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