Mon. Oct 14th, 2019

NEW MEXICO DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH TAKES ACTION RELATED TO VAPING

SANTA FE (KSMX)- The New Mexico Department of Health today announces two major actions related to vaping high-concentrate THC and the overall health risks posed by electronic cigarettes (e‐cigarettes), or vaping.

Secretary of Health Kathy Kunkel is issuing this afternoon an order to the NMDOH Medical Cannabis Program to have all medical cannabis producers and manufacturers affix a label to all cannabis-derived vaping products containing THC that includes the statement:

“WARNING: Vaping cannabis-derived products containing THC has been associated with cases of severe lung injury, leading to difficulty breathing, hospitalization, and even death.”

The Secretary of Health is also releasing a health advisory to the public about vaping lung-related injuries.

Fourteen New Mexico residents have developed severe lung injury requiring hospitalization after vaping. They are victims of an emerging public health threat nationally of lung injury associated with vaping, particularly vaping THC products. The advisory urges everyone to refrain from vaping, no matter the substance or source until current investigations are complete.

“We are issuing this advisory because of the potential risk to the health of many New Mexicans,” said Secretary Kunkel. “Vaping lung-related injuries is uncharted territory in public health, and it is important that residents know the health risks if they make the choice to continue using any vaping products.”

While the specific cause of the injury has not yet been determined, all patients in the state have reported vaping, particularly vaping THC products, prior to becoming ill. Among New Mexico’s 14 cases in New Mexico, six are persons 21 years or younger, including three teenagers between the ages of 13-to-17 years-old.