FDA ban on menthol cigarettes could save hundreds of thousands of lives


Health experts suggest the planned proposed rule banning menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars could save many lives, but the plan has heavy criticism. Some fear that the ban will unfairly affect black Americans and lead to problems with the police – 85% of black smokers prefer menthol cigarettes.

CNN: Banning menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars could save hundreds of thousands of lives, experts say

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is expected to announce a proposed rule this week to ban menthol in cigarettes, as well as flavored cigars. It’s a step that public health officials say is essential to protect public health. “I’m really excited about this possibility. At our foundation, we’ve cared about the issues of tobacco use and preventable deaths for so long,” said Dr. Richard Besser, former director of the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. United. is president of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, a public health advocacy organization. (Christensen, 4/27)

The Hill: Biden’s planned ban on menthol cigarettes divides black Americans

The Biden administration’s decision to ban menthol cigarettes divides the black community, with supporters of the ban saying it promotes a healthier lifestyle and critics saying it unfairly targets black Americans and could lead to injustice and police problems. …While its proponents say the ban will save lives, opponents warn of its potential impact on black smokers who overwhelmingly prefer menthol cigarettes and include members of law enforcement who warn it could put undue pressure on police dealing with higher crime rates. (Gangitano and Manchester, 4/28)

Yahoo News: Ben Crump warns of racial bias in proposed menthol cigarette ban

The Biden administration has indicated that it plans to ban menthol-flavored cigarettes as part of a broader effort to ban flavored tobacco products. While these measures are intended to protect children, who are often pressured into becoming smokers through the availability of products such as flavored e-cigarettes, the inclusion of menthol cigarettes is also expected to have a racialized impact, as 85% of black smokers prefer. menthol-free cigarettes. Despite the potential for positive health benefits for black people, some scholars and activists have warned that this proposed ban could have unintended negative consequences for the black community. As we get closer to putting the ban in place, civil rights lawyer Benjamin Crump has joined the voices warning against the ban, and the famed lawyer sat down with Blavity News to explain his opposition to the new regulations. (Rhodes, 4/25)

And the FDA is taking action on lead in fruit juices —

Fox News: FDA takes action to limit lead content in juice

To reduce children’s exposure to lead, the United States Food and Drug Administration has published preliminary action levels for lead in ready-to-drink (single-strength) apple juice and other juices. and ready-to-drink juice blends. “The exposure of our most vulnerable populations, especially children, to elevated levels of toxic elements from food is unacceptable,” FDA Commissioner Robert M. Califf, MD, said in a statement. press provided by the health agency. Califf also said, “This action to limit lead in juice represents an important step in advancing the FDA’s Closer to Zero action plan, which we believe will have a lasting impact on health. public of current and future generations. (McGorry, 04/27)

In Title 42 Updates —

The Wall Street Journal: Biden blocked by judge from ending Title 42 border policy

A federal judge in Louisiana has issued a temporary restraining order against the Biden administration barring it from proceeding with its plan to end Title 42, the pandemic-era border policy. Judge Robert R. Summerhays of the Western District of Louisiana issued a temporary restraining order against the Biden administration on Wednesday after signaling his intention to do so two days earlier. (Hackman, 4/27)

AP: Federal judge halts preparations to end US asylum limit

A federal judge on Wednesday ordered a two-week halt on the phasing out of pandemic-related restrictions on seeking asylum – and cast doubt on the Biden administration’s plan to lift those restrictions altogether on May 23. For now, the decision is only a temporary setback. for administration. But the judge took a stance heavily in favor of Louisiana, Arizona and 19 other states that have sued to preserve the so-called authority of Title 42, which denies migrants a chance at asylum on the grounds of preventing the spread of COVID-19. (McGill, 4/28)

In other government health policy news –

KHN: Senator Orrin Hatch’s Legacy Tracks GOP’s Health Care Evolution

When it comes to health policy, former Republican senator from Utah Orrin Hatch, who died April 23 at age 88, leaves a complex legacy of major legislative achievements, changing positions, compromises and fierce opposition. In many ways, however, Hatch’s evolution and leadership in health policy during his four decades in the U.S. Senate mirrors that of the Republican Party. When he arrived in Washington as a neophyte politician after an upset victory in 1976, Hatch was a conservative arsonist, one of the early leaders of the “new right” determined to dismantle the federal welfare state and ban the ‘abortion. A former litigator, the new senator had never previously held public office. (Rovner, 4/28)

This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news outlets. Sign up for an email subscription.


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