October 1, 2019
Maureen Regan, Deputy Director, Office of Communications, 410-767-8649
Statement on continued investigation of severe lung illnesses in Maryland amid implementation of Tobacco 21 law
Baltimore, MD – The Maryland Department of Health continues its investigation of severe lung illnesses, of which 20 cases have been identified in Maryland. MDH is working diligently with our federal partners, local health departments and clinicians around the state to investigate these severe lung illnesses. This is a major public health concern, especially for our youth and young adults, as it is not yet known which products or devices caused people to become sick.
Effective today, Maryland’s new Tobacco 21 law aims to curb tobacco and electronic smoking device use in youth and young adults by raising the legal sale age of these products from 18 to 21 years of age. While the investigation continues, MDH recommends refraining from the use of all e-cigarette or vaping products. Cannabis or "THC" vape-products that are obtained off the street may pose the greatest risk.
The Maryland Department of Health is dedicated to protecting and improving the health and safety of all Marylanders through disease prevention, access to care, quality management and community engagement.
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