Health Ministry insists on e-cigarette ban


Modified 4 Nov 2015, 10:30 pm

The Health Ministry remained firm in their view that the use of electronic cigarette containing nicotine should be banned, as the habit can affect the public's health in the long-term.

Deputy director-general of Health (Public Health) Dr Lokman Hakim Sulaiman said the ministry would not support any activity which could contribute to an increased health problems among the younger generation.

He said the decision was reached based on a study conducted by the technical committee to review the effects of electronic cigarette and shisha on health, which also recommended the government to ban the use of electronic cigarette.

Dr Lokman Hakim said the Health Ministry defined electronic cigarette containing nicotine as e-cigarette and electronic cigarette without nicotine called vape.

But most people cannot differentiate between the e-cigarette and vape.

For them, vape and e-cigarette are the same thing. In addition, there is also nicotine-containing liquid vape," he told a press conference in Putrajaya today.

Lokman Hakim said only licensed pharmacists in the licensed premises can sell products containing nicotine in order to recover the nicotine addiction.

"The sale and use of e-cigarette containing nicotine liquid are subject to the Poisons Act 1952 and Food Act 1983 under the Control of Tobacco Products Regulations 2004," he said.

Hence Dr Lokman Hakim said the ministry would take action against sellers and users of e-cigarette that contained nicotine as stated under the Poisons Act 1952.

He said the ministry also would intensify the anti e-cigarette and vape campaign such as 'Tak Nak Merokok' or 'No Smoking' campaign.

"The ministry's message to the community is do not use e-cigarette or vaping as it is harmful to your health in the long term," he said.

Meanwhile the chairperson of the technical committee to review the effects of electronic cigarette and shisha on health, Dr Abdul Razak Mutallif, said although there was no nicotine in the vape the latest trend of vaping would create a new kind of addiction in the society.

"The research we conducted found a lot of long-term effects that will produce new cancer in the future," said Dr Abdul Razak, who is also a senior medical consultant of Institute of Respiratory Medicine, Kuala Lumpur Hospital.

- Bernama