Hike in number of teens using vape alarms solon

July 4, 2023 Ryan Ponce Pacpaco 443 views

A LAWMAKER on Tuesday expressed belief that increasing taxes on e-cigarettes will help raise funds for Universal Health Care and dissuade the youth from vaping.

He also expressed his concern over the increasing number of teenagers in the country that are using vape.

“It is very alarming that more and more Filipino youth are using vape and e-cigarettes. Increasing taxes on these products will not only raise funds for Universal Health Care but also dissuade its use especially among young people,” Anakalusugan Rep. Ray T. Reyes said.

The lawmaker cited the 2019 Global Youth Tobacco Survey (GYTS) released in 2021 that showed 14.1 percent of school-aged children are now smoking electronic cigarettes or vapes.

“It is very alarming because the GYTS study also showed the Philippines topping the list of countries in Southeast Asia where teen vaping is on the rise,” he said.

Reyes added that while vape products are usually branded as a ‘safer’ alternative to cigarettes, they still pose many health risks.

“Kailangang protektahan natin ang ating mga kabataan mula sa mga masamang bagay na maaaring idulot ng mga produktong ito,” he said.

The solon also said that they are studying proposals to raise the minimum age of people allowed to use vaping products.

“All of these are addictive and pose various health risks. Maybe it is wise to raise the minimum age of purchase for these products,” he said.

Republic Act 11900 or the Vape Law passed in July 2022 lowered the age limit of vaping from 21 to 18 years old.

It also removed the two-flavor limit and transferred jurisdiction from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).