The Trump administration is cracking down on e-cigarettes to help curb what many are calling an epidemic of vaping related illnesses in the U.S. During Tuesday’s press conference, the president confirmed he will be enforcing a ban that targets certain flavored e-cigarette products.
“The vaping is coming out, we’re going to be announcing it very shortly. We have to protect our families. At the same time it’s a big industry, we want to protect the industry. As you know, we’ll be taking it off flavors for a period of time.” – Donald Trump, 45th President of the United States
This comes amid efforts to discourage teen e-cigarette use, which officials said has dramatically risen in recent years. Among current e-cigarettes users, nearly 75 percent of those in high school and more than 50 percent in middle school use flavored e-cigarettes.
The new regulations came after President Trump announced a complete ban on vaping products back in September. Reports said he backed away from that policy after being warned of possible political ramifications.
In December, the House Oversight Committee questioned a top official at the FDA regarding the progress of the ban. He responded by saying, although they could not confirm when the ban would be finalized, they are devoted to promoting an effective policy.
“The FDA is committed to a policy that aligns with our public health concerns about what’s going on with kids and flavored e-cigarettes,” stated FDA Director Mitch Zeller.
The Center for Disease Control and prevention has opened a criminal probe into the vaping epidemic, which has now claimed 55 lives and resulted in more than 2,000 hospitalizations. Research has pointed to vitamin E acetate, a compound found in some THC vaping products, as the culprit. However, officials said these findings are not definite.
“We’re doing a very exhaustive examination, and hopefully everything will be back on the market very, very shortly,” said President Trump.
Reports said the FDA could announce the new vaping regulations as soon as Friday.
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