E-cigarettes would be banned in public places under California bill

admin   •   January 27, 2015   •   2440

A man uses an E-cigarette, an electronic substitute in the form of a rod, slightly longer than a normal cigarette, in this illustration picture taken in Paris, March 5, 2013.
CREDIT: REUTERS/CHRISTIAN HARTMANN

(Reuters) – California would ban the use of electronic cigarettes in public places and ramp up enforcement against selling them to minors under a bill introduced in the legislature on Monday.

There is growing concern about the health risks from e-cigarettes, also known as vapor cigarettes or vapes, which are not lit or smoked like their old-fashioned counterparts, but do generally release nicotine in a heated liquid.

“Whether you get people hooked on e-cigarettes or regular cigarettes, it’s nicotine addiction and it kills,” Democratic state Senator Mark Leno, who introduced the bill, said in a telephone interview. “We’re going to see hundreds of thousands of family members and friends die from e-cigarette use just like we did from traditional tobacco use.”

The bill would add e-cigarettes to the list of tobacco products regulated in the state, which already forbids smoking in workplaces, restaurants, bars and other places. It would also ramp up penalties for selling e-cigarettes, which come in such flavors as bubble gum and chocolate, to minors.

California would be the fourth U.S. state to treat them like regular cigarettes, and the 23rd to regulate e-cigarettes in some way. In California, the most populous U.S. state, 122 cities and counties have banned the use of e-cigarettes in certain public places.

Second-hand e-cigarette emissions contain cancer-causing chemicals, and could put children and others at risk if they are in proximity to users, said Kimberly Amazeen, vice president of public policy and advocacy for the American Lung Association in California.

The bill was criticized Monday by a group calling itself the American Vaping Association, which said it would harm smokers who are trying to quit by switching to e-cigarettes, which are marketed as a safer alternative to the combustible kind because they do not flood the lungs with smoke.

“California smokers deserve truthful information about smoke-free alternatives, not hype and conjecture designed to scare them away from attempting to quit with these innovative technology products,” Gregory Conley, president of the American Vaping Association, said in a press release.

But Leno, whose bill is backed by the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association and the American Lung Association, said the vapor released by the e-cigarettes contains carcinogens, and the nicotine in them is addictive.

(Reporting by Sharon Bernstein; Editing by Grant McCool)

DOH-FDA receives first report of vape-associated lung injury case in Phl

Maris Federez   •   November 15, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Department of Health (DOH) on Friday (November 15) announced that it has received an official report on the first case of E-cigarette or Vape-Associated Lung Injury (EVALI) from a private pediatric pulmonologist based in the Visayas.

Based on the DOH information released to the media, the patient is a 16-year old female who had been using e-cigarettes for six months while concurrently consuming combustible cigarettes, referred to as “dual-use.”

It said the patient, who was admitted last October 21, initially presented sudden-onset of severe shortness of breath which required them to administer her with oxygen and be admitted to the ICU.

The report also said the clinical impression was initially considered to be infectious in nature, but after further evaluation, the patient met the case criteria for EVALI based on the guidelines of the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

The patient, however, was subsequently discharged after receiving appropriate care from the attending pulmonologist who is now in continuous communication with the DOH regarding the condition of the patient.

Health Undersecretary Rolando Enrique Domingo said, “all e-cigarette users should seek immediate medical help, and ask their doctors for ways to quit these harmful products.”

“No e-cigarette product should be accessible to young children and adolescents, who are uniquely susceptible to the harms of e-cigarettes and nicotine. I urge non-users not to even try e-cigarettes at all,” he added.

The health department urges the public to report suspected EVALI cases to ecigarettesurveillance@doh.gov.ph. /mbmf

Senate eyes sin tax higher than House version

Maris Federez   •   November 13, 2019

MANILA, Philippines – The Senate Committee on Ways and Means on Monday said that they are targeting to pass a bill that will press for sin taxes which are much higher than that of the House version.

This after President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday (November 12) certified Senate Bill 1074 that seeks to impose higher taxes on alcohol and e-cigarettes including heated tobacco products and vapes.

The higher sin tax aims to support the implementation of the Universal Health Care Act.

Committee chairperson, Sen. Pia Cayetano, said the higher sin tax will ensure that there will be sufficient funds for health services for all Filipinos and lesser consumption of the said sin products.

“I am pushing for a version that recommends higher tax rates than those approved by the House of Representatives for two reasons: first, it will provide proper funding for the delivery of health services to all Filipinos; and second, it will effectively reduce the consumption of sin products,” Cayetano said

In the House version, an estimated P47.9-billion tax will be collected and be allocated to the Universal Health Care program.

A total of P356.9-billion will be allotted for the program in the next five years. (with details from Nel Maribojoc) /mbmf

Filipinos warned of rampant pickpocketing when in France

Marje Pelayo   •   October 29, 2019

PARIS, France – The Philippine Embassy in Paris on Monday (October 28) issued safety guidelines for Filipinos traveling in France as incidents of petty street crimes occur throughout major cities in the country.

“Filipinos traveling to Paris are advised to be extra vigilant and to be alert to avoid being victims of break-ins, robberies, snatching, and pickpocketing,” the Embassy said in an issued advisory.

The Embassy advised Filipino travelers to secure personal belongings even when walking or riding public transportations even those in hotels and apartments as thieves just roam around spying for a possible victim.   

Specifically, the Embassy advised Filipinos to keep their passports and other valuables safe and be wary of people using diverse methods to divert your attention to catch you off guard.

Also, Filipino travelers are reminded not to bring bulk of cash and make sure to hide your bags when inside vehicles as robberies happen even in broad daylight during traffic jams.

“Make sure to follow the instructions of police and military personnel in case of any incident,” the Embassy reminded.

For assistance, Filipino tourists may visit or reach the Embassy through its 24/7 hotline at +33 6 20 59 25 15 or send a message through its e-mail paris.pe@dfa.gov.ph.

Travel Advisory https://parispe.dfa.gov.ph/images/Travel_Advisory-as_of_28_October_2019.pdf

Posted by Philippine Embassy in France on Monday, 28 October 2019

According to the world’s largest database of user-contributed data about cities and countries worldwide, www.numbeo.com, Paris’ crime index rate is at 51.58 as compared to its safety index which is only at 48.42 as of midyear of 2019.

This brings Paris at 105th place among 352 cities in terms of crime rate index in the world.

Caracas in Venezuela tops the list with 84.76 crime rate index while Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates is considered the safest with only 11.10 crime rate index.

The Philippines is at the 40th spot with a 64.46 crime rate index and only a 35.54 safety index, according to the database.

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