US President Donald Trump has announced that after a spate of vaping-related fatalities, his administration will ban flavored e-cigarettes.
Mr Trump said vaping was a “fresh issue” for journalists, particularly for kids. US Secretary of Health Alex Azar said the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is going to finalize a plan to take off the market all non-tobacco flavors.
Six fatalities and 450 reported lung disease instances linked to vaping across 33 countries have occurred. With an average age of 19, many of the 450 reported instances are young individuals. This month, Michigan became the first US state to ban e-cigarettes that were flavored. Joining Mr Trump at the White House on Wednesday, Mr Azar said that distributing the fresh e-cigarette instruction would take several weeks for the FDA.
He also said that if it determined kids were deliberately drawn to e-cigarettes, the agency would take enforcement action. This week, US First Lady Melania Trump tweeted that she was “profoundly worried about our children’s increasing epidemic of e-cigarette use.”
She was at the announcement on Wednesday. Mr Trump informed journalists that his administration, including his 13-year-old son Barron, would enforce powerful laws to safeguard “innocent kids.” “We can’t let people get sick and we can’t be so influenced by our youth,” he said.
“That’s how the first lady got engaged. Together, she’s got a child, that’s a lovely young guy, and she’s feeling very, very heavily about it. Both of us are reading it, many individuals are reading it. But individuals are dying with vaping so we look very, very carefully at it. “He added that he hoped the announcement would make relatives” tougher.
“People will watch what we’re saying and parents will be much tougher about their kids,” the president said. “Many individuals believe vaping is wonderful, it’s great. It’s not really wonderful,” the health secretary said in a press release soon after Mr. Trump’s announcement, representatives “will not stand idly by” as a generation becomes addicted to nicotine.
Acting FDA Commissioner Dr. Ned Sharpless said “if we see children migrating to tobacco-flavored products, we will take further measures to tackle the use of these products by young people.” Manufacturers of e-cigarettes such as Juul have been blamed for using flavored products such as mango, cream or cinnamon roll to fuel childhood addiction.
Last year, Juul, who dominates the industry, stopped selling most of his flavored appliances to defuse mounting criticism. Health authorities are still researching whether the vaping-related diseases are caused by a specific toxin or substance or whether they are the consequence of heavy use.
In early August, the first death took place in Illinois. Five more have died since then and hundreds across 33 countries have been sickened. Health authorities have not yet identified the cause of the vaping disease. THC, the cannabis psychoactive chemicals, was present in some, but not all, equipment used by those who fell ill, tell officials.
Many products have been discovered to contain substantial quantities of vitamin E acetate, an oil used to thicken the vaping liquid, the FDA said. Several patients with lipoid pneumonia have been discovered that happens when somebody inhales fats or oils.
Article originally featured by BBC.