Due to maintenance, the St Lukes website and St Lukes Connect may experience intermittent outages from 5:15pm until 11:30pm on Thursday, February 23. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

6 weeks free – Join St Lukes today and you’ll get 6 weeks free on eligible products. Plus, we’ll also waive all 2, 3, and 6 month waiting periods on extras. Offer ends March 31, 2024, T&Cs apply

The fight for good health

The fight for good health

In the last week we have read so much about a public health system under pressure and failing the community, the ramping of ambulances, shortage of beds and now the shortage of GPS in an increasingly unaffordable Medicare system. As a consequence, Governments, health professionals, health organisations and health funders like ourselves have to make reactive and costly decisions on how we fund a health system to meet the growing challenges of an aging population.

Rather than being reactionary, what about if policy and decision makers take forward thinking and more proactive steps to assist the community in avoiding circumstances which promote poor health outcomes, and as a consequence place less pressure on the health system going forward and providing better health outcomes for the community.

We need to set health policies to support good health – not health policies that support an industry to continue making money from addiction and terrible health outcomes.

Vaping will claim the wellbeing and lives of future generations by indulging in a habit that is being promoted by Big Tobacco.

Sometimes, we need assistance in maintaining our good intentions, and that includes from policy makers who have the capacity to make it easier for us to be healthy or, at least, help make it harder for us to be unhealthy.

At this very moment, there is a compelling case for policy makers to take action to eliminate a situation which, if left unchecked, is expected to result in chronic disease and addiction over coming decades. I am referring to vaping.

The sole aim of tobacco companies is to profit from the sale of habit-forming substances that are likely to kill people when used exactly as intended.

St.LukesHealth is determined to fight back against this mounting threat to the health and wellbeing of our young people. It would appear to be a no-brainer towards our ambitious vision to make Tasmania the healthiest island on the planet.

We have submitted to the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) that the time has come to drive a stake into the ground when it comes to imposing controls on vaping. There needs to be unapologetically strict and rigidly enforced restrictions introduced, to protect Tasmanian youth from an industry which is marketing harmful substances to young people as if they were selling lollies.

We are asking the TGA to make sure tobacco companies are not allowed to peddle ‘flavoured’ vapes – regardless of whether they contain nicotine or not. We don’t believe Tasmanian youth should be encouraged to take up a habit that increases the risk of them fighting addiction that may just last their entire life, as well as end it, costing the community massive amounts in chronic disease care along the way.

Every single aspect of vape sales and distribution must be regulated so their appeal to Tasmanian youth is diminished. This includes plain packaging and the exclusion of additives to give them a ‘cooling’ sensation, deliberately intended to enhance their appeal.

Where a medical professional feels a patient may benefit from using vapes in an effort to break an existing tobacco habit, they can be prescribed and sold accordingly. However, the importation of any vapes, or the fluid they contain, for any other reason, needs to be banned.

Our objective at St.LukesHealth is to get the TGA to take immediate action aimed at achieving generational change and protecting our Tasmanian youth from falling victim to the same sort of fatal addiction as tobacco, which has killed so many people entrapped by the addictive habit.   

We have a chance right now to stop our kids being coerced into decisions that will fundamentally place their health at risk for the rest of their lives.  

- Paul Lupo
CEO St.LukesHealth