AMA Strengthens Position on E-cigarette Regulation

CHICAGO — Concerned by the rise in use of electronic cigarettes among minors, the American Medical Assoc. (AMA) recently called for reining in the sale and marketing practices of companies that produce electronic nicotine-delivery systems. The nation’s largest physician organization adopted the new policy at the AMA annual meeting.
The new policy extends the AMA’s existing policy adopted in 2010 that calls for all electronic cigarettes to be subject to the same regulations and oversight that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) applies to tobacco and nicotine.
“The AMA supports an FDA proposal to fill the gap in federal regulations on purchasing, labeling, packaging, and advertising of electronic cigarettes,” said incoming AMA President Dr. Robert Wah.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that use of electronic cigarettes by students in the nation’s middle and high schools has more than doubled from 3.3{06cf2b9696b159f874511d23dbc893eb1ac83014175ed30550cfff22781411e5} in 2011 to 6.8{06cf2b9696b159f874511d23dbc893eb1ac83014175ed30550cfff22781411e5} in 2012. In addition to minimum-purchase-age restrictions, the new AMA policy supports:
Disclosures regarding the design, content, and emissions;
Child-proof and tamper-proof packaging and design;
Enhanced product labeling;
Restrictions related to flavors that appeal to minors; and
Prohibition of unsupported marketing claims as a tobacco-cessation tool.
The AMA also strongly encourages further development of strategies to prevent marketing of electronic cigarettes and nicotine-delivery systems to minors.