As mentioned in a recent Consumers’ Research article, the FDA is currently pushing for higher regulations on the e-cigarette market in attempts to limit access to the products of under-18 year olds. The regulations drafted by the FDA involve the imposing of age limits on the products, removal of the product from vending machines, and ban on online vending. However, yesterday the White House’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB) changed the language of the proposed regulations, so that the ban on “non face-to-face” sales only applies to vending machines.
“All comments will be carefully considered as the final rule is being developed,” assured Jennifer Haliski, spokeswoman for the FDA. “As the science base continues to develop for these products, the agency has the ability to take additional regulatory actions designed to further minimize the public health burden of tobacco use in this country.”
Public health advocates find the proposed regulations on e-cigarettes too weak, as they do not address the use of advertising and flavors that seem geared towards children. This recent weakening of the FDA proposal is met with criticism, as it is seen as a failure to ensure that children cannot buy these products, for which the full effects on health are unknown.
Further research is being conducted to understand the full effects of e-cigarettes on public wellbeing. While marketed to be less dangerous that traditional cigarettes, many argue the new product needs to be more regulated until substantial research is completed.
Read more here- “White House Weakened Draft of FDA’s Proposed Tobacco Regulations,” (Toni Clarke and Sharon Begley, Reuters)
Olivia is a graduate of Villanova University where she studied Economics and History, minoring in Gender and Women's Studies. She also has experience working with federal legislatures on health care policy, women's issues, and Internet safety.