Surgeon General Calls Youth Use of E-Cigarettes a Public Health Concern

Surgeon General Vivek Murthy called the use of e-cigarettes among youths and young adults “a major public health concern” in a report released Thursday, adding pressure for the federal government to do more to limit use among children.

The report finds that use of new tobacco products has increased in recent years as use of traditional cigarettes among young people has decreased. E-cigarettes are a “rapidly emerging and diverse product class,” the report says, and have risks for young people, pregnant women and fetuses. Action can be taken at the national, state and local levels to address the issue, the report adds.

“Although we continue to learn more about e-cigarettes with each passing day, we currently know enough to take action to protect our nation’s young people from being harmed by these products,” Murthy writes. “To prevent and reduce the use of e-cigarettes by youth and young adults, we must work together as a society. We must implement proven prevention and education strategies.”

Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), the ranking member on the Energy and Commerce Committee, called for congressional action to reduce the use of e-cigarettes among children.

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