Regence joins health officials warning of vaping dangers and encouraging end to e-cigarette use

September 11, 2019
By Regence

Medical professionals nationwide are warning the public about the dangers of vaping tobacco and marijuana after a recent surge in severe lung disease cases, including six vaping-related deaths.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention put out a notice asking the public to stop using all forms of e-cigarette products until more information is determined about the health impacts of vaping. Severe pulmonary disease cases have been reported in 33 states and there have been six deaths, including one in Oregon and another in California. The Trump administration is also reportedly considering a ban on flavored e-cigarettes

Regence medical experts strongly agree with the CDC recommendation to stop e-cigarette use.

“Due to the recent surge in severe cases and how much we still simply do not know about vaping and its effects, anyone who continues to use e-cigarettes is putting their health in danger,” said Dr. Cheryl Pegus, president of consumer solutions and chief medical officer for Regence. “The smartest advice at this point is to simply avoid vaping altogether.”

Health experts cannot yet determine which substance or substances in e-cigarette liquid are causing lung injury. The CDC has created a website to provide up-to-date information on its findings.

types of e-cigarettes
Types of e-cigarettes. Image courtesy CDC

Regence members who use e-cigarettes or are considering quitting are encouraged to contact their primary care provider about support, information or programs that can help. Medications including Bupropion (tobacco cessation formulation), Chantix® (varenicline) and Nicotrol® nasal spray or inhalers may be covered options under your health insurance.

A health coach is also a benefit available under some Regence plans. And wellness tools at can provide additional information and help for people who want to quit using nicotine.

Many community-based tobacco cessation programs are also offered free of charge and provide significant support to help people quit.