The NYTS is a cross-sectional, school-based electronic survey that uses a stratified, three-stage, cluster-sampling design (across counties, schools, and classrooms) to generate a nationally representative sample of U.S. middle school students (grades 6 through 8) and high school students (grades 9 through 12).
Amongst middle school students, vaping dropped from 10.5% (1.24 million) in 2019, to 4.7% (550 000).
Carried out between January 16th and March 16th, the most recent school-based survey indicated that 19.6% of high school students (3.02 million) reported e-cigarette use, down from 27.5% (4.11 million) in 2019. Amongst middle school students the figure dropped aswell, from 10.5% (1.24 million) in 2019, to 4.7% (550 000).
However, despite these promising numbers pointed out the FDA, teen vaping rates have increased dramatically since 2011 and remain relatively high, with 3.6 million youth believed to be current users. Moreover, explained the agency, data indicated an alarming increase in the number of teens using disposable e-cigarettes.
“This emerging shift in youth e-cigarette use according to device type aligns with retail sales data indicating increased sales of disposable e-cigarettes. Ongoing efforts to further address youth e-cigarette use across the diversity of device types, including disposable products, are critical,” reported an article on The New England Journal of Medicine.
Vape businesses warned
To this effect, the FDA has recently sent warning letters to ten vape businesses including Cool Clouds Distribution Inc. (doing business as Puff Bar), asking them to remove their flavoured disposable e-cigarettes off the market since they do not have the required PreMarket Authorization. These new actions are part of the agency’s efforts to remove products it considers appealing to teens from the market.
“The FDA continues to prioritize enforcement against e-cigarette products, specifically those most appealing and accessible to youth,” said FDA Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn. “We are concerned about the popularity of these products among youth and want to make clear to all tobacco product manufacturers and retailers that, even during the ongoing pandemic, the FDA is keeping a close watch on the marketplace and will hold companies accountable.”
“Despite suspending in-person inspection activities—such as retail compliance checks and vape shop inspections—due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our enforcement against unauthorized e-cigarette products has endured,” added the director of the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products Mitch Zeller, J.D. “These warning letters are the result of ongoing internet monitoring for violations of tobacco laws and regulations.”