What We're Reading: California Vaping Bill; Alcohol and Afib Risk; Novo Nordisk Authorized Generic Insulins

January 7, 2020
AJMC Staff

California lawmakers propose vaping ban targeting all flavored tobacco products; abstinence from alcohol shown to benefit patients with atrial fibrillation through reduced episode recurrence; Novo Nordisk launches authorized generic insulins with plans to improve affordability of the drug.

California Proposes Strict Vaping Bill

After the Trump administration announced a partial ban on several e-cig cartridges, California lawmakers proposed a stronger bill yesterday that would outlaw stores sales of all flavored tobacco products in the state, according to the Los Angeles Times. As opposed to the federally imposed temporary ban, California’s proposal would include banning menthol-flavored cartridges and refillable, tank-based vaping systems that can be filled with flavored chemicals, which were both excluded from the federal ban. California’s ban would additionally outlaw flavors for traditional combustible cigarettes and cigars, as well as for chewing tobacco and hookah pipes.

Abstinence From Alcohol Linked to Reduction of Afib Episodes

Abstaining from alcohol was shown to potentially improve the heartbeat of people with atrial fibrillation (AF), as episode occurrence differed by 20 percentage points between those who drank alcohol (73%) and those who did not (53%), according to Reuters. As Renato Lopes, MD, professor of medicine at Duke University, explains, alcohol is not only a marker of increased risk of AF, but also seems to be a true risk factor, as the study results showed significant reductions in both the AF burden and recurrence of AF for those who abstained from alcohol.

Novo Nordisk Launches Authorized Generic Insulins

As part of a package aiming to make insulin more affordable, Novo Nordisk launched its authorized generics of NovoLog and NovoLog Mix, which are available at a 50% list price discount compared with their brand-name versions, according to The Center for Biosimilars. This month, the company will additionally allow patients to purchase up to 3 vials or 2 packs of pens for any combination of insulin for a flat fee of $99, as well as offer a 1-time supply option for no cost when a patient’s insulin supply has run out to combat instances of skipped or rationed doses.