The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has launched an advertising campaign called Outbreak, targeting young adults and parents, in response to the growing teen vaping epidemic and the increase in vaping-related lung illness.
The multimedia campaign composed of television, internet, and radio ads was prompted by an executive order from Gov. Gavin Newsom. Its launch makes California the first state to battle the now deadly outbreak with a public service advertising effort.
To date, approximately 1,600 cases of vaping-related illness have been reported in the U.S., with 34 deaths, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In California, there have been 138 reports of vaping-related illness, all involving hospitalization and many requiring life-support interventions. There have also been three deaths in the state. The average age of those affected is 27 years, and the youngest person affected was 14 years.
According to CDPH, 86% of high school students who consume tobacco use a vaping device, and the prevalence of cannabis vaping, which is suspected to be tied to vaping lung illness, has been rising dramatically. A second phase of the campaign will roll out in January 2020.
More information on vaping and lung illness is available here.