FDA Urged to Act on Remaining Applications

    Photo: New Africa

    Several anti-tobacco groups have sent a letter to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration urging the agency to act on the outstanding premarket tobacco product applications (PMTAs) and pushing for the denial of all flavored e-cigarette products.

    It’s been more than four months since the FDA was supposed to decide which e-cigarette products can remain on the market, but the agency still hasn’t completed some of the reviews, including some of the bestselling e-cigarettes.

    “We write to urge the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to expedite decisions on the premarket tobacco product applications (PMTAs) still pending before the agency involving the flavored e-cigarette products, including those with menthol flavoring and, based on the best available scientific evidence, deny the pending applications for all nontobacco flavored e-cigarettes in order to protect the nation’s young people from the health harms of these products,” the letter said.

    The letter was signed by the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Heart Association and the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, among others.

    “Every day that FDA delays action, more of our kids remain at risk,” said Matthew Myers, president of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. “While the FDA has ruled on applications from a lot of small companies, it hasn’t ruled on the applications from the large companies whose products are being used by a majority of kids.”

    American Vaping Association President Gregory Conley pointed to data showing that youth vaping has been declining. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), use of e-cigarettes went down among middle school and high school students from 2019 to 2020.

    But even with the drop, the CDC said it “estimated that more than 2 million U.S. middle [school] and high school students reported currently using e-cigarettes in 2021.”