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Home Forums Get Involved Your Rights are under attack Bureau of Tobacco Free Florida’s Statement Regarding Electronic Cigarettes

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    Full article here:

    On April 24, 2014, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) publicly released a draft of its proposed rule – commonly called a “deeming document” – which seeks to regulate e-cigarettes and other tobacco products not currently regulated by the FDA. The Florida Department of Health appreciates the long overdue release by the FDA of its draft proposed rule regarding electronic cigarettes.
    Bureau of Tobacco Free Florida’s Statement Regarding Electronic Cigarettes

    The emergence of electronic cigarettes (also known as e-cigarettes, vapors, vaporizers, nicotine vaporizers or hookah pens) has triggered a flood of questions and considerable debate and discussion regarding their safety, ability to help smokers quit, and the risks they pose to children and teens. While the makers of e-cigarettes claim they are safe, there is uncertainty as to whether e-cigarettes are a safe alternative to smoking and Floridians should be very cautious. The Florida Department of Health’s Bureau of Tobacco Free Florida advises consumers to wait for reliable scientific evidence on their safety and effectiveness to become available before using e-cigarettes.

    Preliminary analysis from the FDA e-cigarette samples contained detectable levels of known carcinogens and toxic chemicals to which users could potentially be exposed.1 There are more than 200 brands on the market and they have different chemicals that they use. Scientific testing shows that the products vary widely in the amount of nicotine and other chemicals they deliver. Therefore, currently there is no way for consumers to know what is actually delivered by the product they have purchased. Furthermore, these products have simply not been around long enough to determine their long-term health effects.

    Tobacco Free Florida is concerned that, in addition to their possibly harmful effects, e-cigarettes may become a tool used to get youth and young adults hooked on nicotine, which is a highly addictive chemical.2,3,4 Many e-cigarette brands offer their products in fruit and candy flavors, like cotton candy and gummy bears, that are especially enticing to young people, and currently, they are easily available online, at mall kiosks or at local retailers. Furthermore, while tobacco products like cigarettes and dip have been banned from advertising on TV for decades, we have seen a notable increase in the marketing of e-cigarettes, including TV commercials. E-cigarette companies are using the same tactics of the tobacco industry to successfully market regular cigarettes to young people. In fact, according to the CDC, the number of middle school and high school students in the United States who used electronic cigarettes doubled in 2012 compared to just a year earlier.5

    Furthermore, the number of calls to poison centers involving e-cigarette liquids containing nicotine rose from one per month in September 2010 to 215 per month in February 2014, according to a CDC study published April 3, 2014. The number of calls per month involving conventional cigarettes did not show a similar increase during the same time period. More than half of the calls to poison centers due to e-cigarettes involved young children under age 5.6

    According to the FDA, e-cigarette makers cannot legally claim that an e-cigarette product “helps stop or reduce the cigarette urge,” “helps stop or reduce smoking,” or similar claims that it is a smoking deterrent drug product.7 Yet, many e-cigarette ads openly violate this restriction, causing concern that they are not interested in public safety. It is also worrisome that e-cigarette companies fought against treating e-cigarettes as drug-delivery devices, a standard that proven smoking cessation products like the patch and gum have met; products that have met the requirement to be drug-delivery devices have to submit clinical trials to the FDA to prove they are safe and effective and it appears e-cigarette companies want it both ways, to be able to make the claims without having to prove those claims are true.
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