NYSVA's New York Minute... While the budget bill was being debated at the capital, the NY State Health Commissioner wrote a warning letter to physicians urging them NOT to recommend e-cigarettes to their smoking patients. In response to the egregious statements made in his letter, NYSVA issued a point-by-point counter argument in a letter to the New York Department of Health.
We issued a press release and wrote numerous op-eds, but unfortunately the media black-out is as thick as thieves in NY and no media outlet would pick it up. However, our letter got the Health Department's attention and the governor's as well.
In March-May, we were invited by both NY Department of Health and the Governor's office for a series of meetings where we presented research data and expressed our willingness to work with them to develop common sense (not job-killing) regulations. We also offered them the opportunity for a scientific panel of experts to come to Albany to present to the administration and legislative bodies. We are optimistic that we will be able to have this event next session.
Through these meetings with the governor's office, and the Department of Health, NYSVA indeed found common ground with which to move forward in the future. Since then, we share with them research studies as they come out, and will have follow up meetings with key players.