POLICY BRIEFINGS


FDA to Temporarily Ban Certain Flavored Vaping Products


The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced its decision to temporarily ban some flavored vaping products in response to the increasing rate of e-cigarette use by children and young adults. The agency will restrict sales of all pre-packaged flavored vaping pods other than tobacco and menthol; the regulation will not apply to open-tank vaping systems. Companies that do not stop manufacturing, distributing, or selling such unauthorized flavored, cartridge-based products within 30 days of the publication of the guidance risk enforcement actions by the FDA. The policy aims to target the products that are most responsible for putting teens at risk of e-cigarette use while maintaining access to the products for adults to aid in combustible tobacco cessation efforts. The banned pod flavors represent approximately 80 percent of retail-store e-cigarette sales in 2019, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ). The guidance is less restrictive than the comprehensive vaping ban previewed by the President last September. House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) has argued that the FDA guidance does not go far enough. Pallone supports legislation (H.R. 2339, the Reversing the Youth Tobacco Epidemic Act) that would ban all flavored tobacco products. No. 2 Senate Democrat Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-Wash.), and Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) also issued statements calling for more to be done to address the youth vaping epidemic.


E&C Schedules Health Legislative Hearing For This Week


The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health announced that it will hold a legislative hearing this week to consider several bills that aim to improve Americans’ health care coverage and outcomes. During Wednesday’s hearing, the panel will consider the following legislation:

  • H.R.2271, the "Scarlett's Sunshine on Sudden Unexpected Death Act"
  • H.R.2468, the "School-Based Allergies and Asthma Management Program Act"
  • H.R.4801, the "Healthy Start Reauthorization Act"
  • H.R.1379, the "Ensuring Lasting Smiles Act"
  • H.R.2477, the "BENES Act"
  • H.R.3935, the "Protecting Patients Transportation to Care Act"
  • H.R. 5534, the "Comprehensive Immunosuppressive Drug Coverage for Kidney Transplant Patients Act"


Democratic States Appeal to Supreme Court in ACA Case


Democratic-led states have filed two appeals urging the Supreme Court of schedule a fast-track review of the current legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The group of state officials and lawmakers ask the high court to issue a definitive ruling upholding the 2010 health care law during its current term, which runs through June. A federal appeals court struck down the ACA’s individual mandate last month, while skirting the question of the law’s overall constitutionality. The decision keeps the ACA in effect for the time being, while remanding the case back to a federal judge in Texas to determine how much of the rest of the law, if any, is also unconstitutional.


Upcoming Congressional Hearings and Markups


Senate Finance Committee business meeting to consider H.R.5430, to implement the Agreement between the United States of America, the United Mexican States, and Canada attached as an Annex to the Protocol Replacing the North American Free Trade Agreement; 9:30 a.m., 215 Dirksen Bldg.; January 7

House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health hearing on “Legislation to Improve Americans’ Health Care Coverage and Outcomes;” 10:00 a.m., 2322 Rayburn Bldg.; January 8



January 6, 2020: | Page 1 Page 2

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