BATH, N.Y. (WETM) – Steuben County Public Health officials are urging all county residents to stop using e-cigarettes or vaping devices immediately.
“Local health departments are responsible for ensuring the health and safety of the communities they serve,” said county Public Health Director Darlene Smith. “All evidence points to the very real danger of electronic cigarettes for our youth and adults.”
Smith pointed to the recent report the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is investigating 450 cases of serious respiratory illness and six deaths linked to vaping.
In response to the CDC’s report and the epidemic use among youth, the Trump administration announced plans to ban all flavored e-cigarette products. In coming weeks, the FDA will finalize a policy to withdraw all non-tobacco flavored e-cigarette products, including mint and menthol products.
In addition, the New York State Department of Health reported it will begin exploring the contents of the products and will require shops selling vaping products to post a warning of health risks.
Anyone experiencing symptoms who uses vape products should contact their health care provider immediately. Health care providers should report possible cases to the local poison control center at (800) 222- 1222. If individuals are concerned at all with their vaping device or products or just want more information, they can call the NYSDOH’s Vaping Hotline at (888) 364-3046.
“There are seven types of proven and safe smoking cessation aids, and e-cigarettes are not one of them,” Smith said. “We are already starting to see long-term health problems with vaping, and I would not be surprised to learn about even more in the future.
Quitting now could save countless lives.” Smith urged county residents to ask their health care providers for more information on how to quit vaping or smoking, or to contact the NYS Smokers’ Quitline by visiting www.nysmokefree.com or calling 1-800-NY-QUITS.