What is an electronic cigarette?
Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes), shaped in most cases to look like a conventional cigarette, are used to simulate the act of smoking. They produce a visible vapour similar in appearance to cigarette smoke and the end of the device may glow like a cigarette. Typically an electronic cigarette consists of a cartridge, an atomizer and a battery. Users inhale in a similar manner to how they would use a conventional cigarette and exhale a vapour solution that resembles smoke.
What are the health risks?
Research on e-cigarettes and their potential health risk is still in its early stages. To date there has been no substantial data published on the long-term side effects of e-cigarette usage or the potential effects for others who may be exposed to the vapour.
Are they legal?
There are a broad range of products available, but currently no regulations or standards for production exist. According to Health Canada, the sale of e-cigarettes containing nicotine is illegal. It is also illegal in Canada to make any health claims about e-cigarettes, including their suggested use as a smoking cessation aide.
What is St. Joseph’s policy on e-cigarettes?
E-cigarettes are not permitted on hospital property, including parking garages.
Where can I find more information?
For more information, learn about the Middlesex-London Health Unit’s position on e-cigarettes.