Washington, DC—The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) commends the Administration for its announcement today that it intends to "clear the market" of all flavored e-cigarettes, including of menthol and mint flavors. The move comes as e-cigarette use among adolescents has reached epidemic proportions and as vaping has led to an increase in severe illness and six deaths nationwide.
"The American Academy of Pediatrics commends the Administration for its bold, decisive action to remove flavored e-cigarettes from the marketplace and to help stop the youth vaping epidemic," said AAP President Kyle Yasuda, MD, FAAP. "Pediatricians have been raising alarm with increased urgency about the toll of e-cigarettes on their teenage patients, which ranges from wheezing and coughing to compromised lung function, asthma exacerbation and most recently, to seizures, respiratory distress and death. This is a public health emergency and we are pleased to see the federal government leading efforts to help address it."
The Academy has long advocated for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to use its existing authority to regulate all e-cigarettes and has successfully sued the agency for allowing the products to remain on the market. Today's announcement is a major step toward reversing the youth e-cigarette epidemic.
"The lack of meaningful federal regulation of e-cigarettes has carried real consequences for children's health and safety," said Dr. Yasuda. "E-cigarettes designed to look like flash drives, pens and watches have made their way into the hands of young people. Flavors that appeal to children, like cotton candy and gummy bear, have been marketed in ways specifically designed to attract and addict teens. Today's announcement is a long overdue and needed step to prevent further endangerment and addiction of an entire generation of young people. FDA must now follow through on its promise without delay."
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The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 67,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For more information, visit www.aap.org and follow us on Twitter @AmerAcadPeds.