E-Cigarette "Just as Bad," Proclaims Health Ministry

E-cigarettes are "just as bad" as conventional cigarettes, says the Malaysian Health Ministry, noting that "there is concern this nicotine delivery to the human lung might result in stronger toxicological, physiological and addictive effects."
By: Action on Smoking and Health (ASH)
Oct. 19, 2010 - PRLog -- Furthermore, they are dangerous to the public health because they "might be used to perpetuate smoking by sustaining nicotine dependence in environments where smoking is prohibited."

This, indeed, is the same result as a recent study which suggested that the widespread use of e-cigs could cause a 25% increased death rate, even if they were somewhat safer for the individual user, because people who would otherwise be forced to quit could continue to smoke, and many nonsmokers - especially teens - would be attracted to the new product and become addicted to nicotine. http://www.prlog.org/10852320-cigarettes-or-snus-may-cost-not-save-lives-study.html

The Malaysian government has declared that nicotine is a Group C Poison within the Poisons Act 1952 (Act 366), where it can only be sold or supplied by an authorized licensed individual under the provisions of Section 22.  Since none of the e-cigs have been registered, "the public are strongly advised not to purchase any e-cigarette, which is very costly. The product on sale now is not legal and more importantly, there is a major lack of certainty with regards to its safety and effectiveness."

E-cigs have reportedly been banned in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Israel, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, Panama, and Taiwan, restricted in Singapore, are pending restriction in the UK as a drug, and the subject of law suits by attorneys general in several states, says public interest law professor John Banzhaf, Executive Director of Action on Smoking and Health (ASH).

In the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration [FDA], which found that e-cigs pose "acute health risks," and that the "danger posed by the unrestricted distribution of [these] unregulated products containing toxic chemicals cannot seriously be questioned," has warned major companies that their product is "illegal."

More recently the Air Force joined New Jersey and Suffolk County, NY, in banning the use of e-cigs wherever smoking is prohibited.  The Surgeon General of the Air Force has determined that “no studies have been done to demonstrate the safety or effectiveness of these products as tobacco cessation aids, and they are not approved by the FDA as a drug delivery device. . . ..  Due to the nature, appearance and safety concerns of electronic cigarettes, they are considered to be in the same category of tobacco products.”

Professor of Public Interest Law at GWU,
FAMRI Dr. William Cahan Distinguished Professor,
FELLOW, World Technology Network, and
Executive Director and Chief Counsel
Action on Smoking and Health (ASH)
America’s First Antismoking Organization
2013 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20006, USA
(202) 659-4310 // (703) 527-8418
Internet: http://ash.org/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/AshOrg

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Action on Smoking and Health (ASH), America's first anti-smoking and nonsmokers' rights organization, serves as the legal action arm of the anti-smoking community. It is supported by tax-deductible contributions.
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