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56 Health and Other Organizations Back Trump Administration Plan to Remove Flavored E-Cigarettes from the Market

(September 24, 2019) - WASHINGTON, D.C.

For more information please contact:

Allison MacMunn
[email protected]
312-801-7628

In a letter to President Trump, 56 public health, medical, parent, educational and other organizations today expressed strong support for the Administration’s plan to remove flavored e-cigarettes from the market and urged that the plan be swiftly and fully implemented. A similar letter was sent to First Lady Melania Trump, who has raised alarms about the youth e-cigarette epidemic and supported efforts to remove flavored e-cigarettes from the market.

In response to new data showing that the youth e-cigarette epidemic has gotten even worse this year and 5 million U.S. kids now use e-cigarettes, the Administration on September 11 announced that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will soon issue a final policy to “clear the market” of flavored e-cigarettes – including mint and menthol as these two flavors are used by 64 percent of high school e-cigarette users. The Administration stated that the FDA will issue the policy within weeks and enforce it a month later.

“Our organizations commend and fully support your plan to remove all non-tobacco flavored e-cigarettes from the market, including mint and menthol flavors. If this plan is swiftly and fully implemented, it will play a critical role in reversing the youth e-cigarette epidemic,” the letter to the President states.

Results of two newly-released national surveys show the youth e-cigarette epidemic is worse than ever and is putting millions of kids at risk of nicotine addiction and other health dangers.

According to the 2019 National Youth Tobacco Survey (2019 NYTS), e-cigarette use among high school students increased to 27.5% in 2019, up from 20.8% in 2018 and 11.7% in 2017. Altogether, 5 million middle and high school students – including more than 1 in 4 of all high school students – now use e-cigarettes.

Similarly, the 2019 Monitoring the Future survey showed that 25.4% of 12th graders report vaping nicotine in the past 30 days, compared to 20.9% in 2018 and 11% in 2017. Alarmingly, 1 in 9 of all high school seniors (11.7%) report that they vaped nicotine nearly daily, a strong indication of addiction. 

The evidence is clear that flavors play a critical role in youth use of e-cigarettes. Research has found that nearly all (97%) current youth e-cigarette users use flavored e-cigarettes and 70% cite flavors as a key reason for their use. The 2019 NYTS found that 63.9% of high school e-cigarette users use mint or menthol-flavored products, an increase from 51.2% in 2018 and 42.3% in 2017. 

Adding to the urgent need to protect kids, health authorities are currently investigating at least 530 cases of serious respiratory illnesses associated with use of e-cigarette products in 38 states, with 9 deaths now reported. Many cases involve teens and young adults.

In their letter to First Lady Melania Trump, the organizations thanked her for raising the alarm about the youth e-cigarette epidemic. The First Lady joined the President in the Oval Office for the announcement of the new policy to remove flavored e-cigarettes from the market, and she recently tweeted, “I am deeply concerned about the growing epidemic of e-cigarette use in our children. We need to do all we can to protect the public from tobacco-related disease and death, and prevent e-cigarettes from becoming an on-ramp to nicotine addiction for a generation of youth.”

Here is the list of groups signing the letter to the President:

Academy of General Dentistry 
Action on Smoking and Health 
African American Tobacco Control Leadership Council 
Allergy & Asthma Network 
American Academy of Family Physicians 
American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology 
American Academy of Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery 
American Academy of Pediatrics 
American Association for Cancer Research 
American Association for Respiratory Care 
American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network 
American College of Cardiology 
American College of Physicians 
American College of Preventive Medicine 
American Dental Association 
American Federation of School Administrators 
American Federation of Teachers 
American Heart Association 
American Lung Association 
American Medical Student Association 
American Public Health Association 
American School Health Association 
American Society of Clinical Oncology 
American Thoracic Society 
Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health 
Association of State and Territorial Health Officials 
Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids 
Catholic Health Association of the United States 
ClearWay Minnesota 
Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America 
Counter Tools 
Eta Sigma Gamma – National Health Education Honorary 
International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer 
March of Dimes 
National African American Tobacco Prevention Network 
National Association of County and City Health Officials 
National Association of Elementary School Principals 
National Association of School Nurses 
National Association of Secondary School Principals 
National Education Association 
National Hispanic Medical Association 
National Network of Public Health Institutes 
Oncology Nursing Society 
Parents Against Vaping E-Cigarettes (PAVe) 
Protect Kids: Fight Flavored E-Cigarettes 
Public Health Law Center 
Public Health Solutions 
Respiratory Health Association 
Society for Public Health Education 
Students Against Destructive Decisions 
The Society of State Leaders of Health and Physical Education 
The Society of Thoracic Surgeons 
Trinity Health 
Trust for America’s Health 
Truth Initiative 
U.S. PIRG

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