As e-cigarettes quickly gain popularity–more than 20 million people tried smoking one sometime in 2013–insurers are left without guidance or precedence on how to determine whether they should raise premiums for members who smoke e-cigarettes, reported the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

The Affordable Care Act states insurers can add as much as 50 percent to tobacco users’ premiums, but it doesn’t mention anything about e-cigarettes, which weren’t commonly used back in 2010, FierceHealthPayer┬ápreviously reported.

Without federal guidance, insurers can decide whether they consider e-cigarettes, which contain no tar and less nicotine than traditional cigarettes, to be in the same category as traditional tobacco products.

“There’s a little bit of a regulatory vacuum here that I think could allow an insurance company to kind of decide for itself how to approach this issue,” Sabrina Corlette, an attorney and professor at Georgetown University’s Center on Health Insurance Reforms, told the Post-Dispatch. “This is one of these areas where the industry is ahead of the regulators on this one.”

As e-cigarettes quickly gain popularity–more than 20 million people tried smoking one sometime in 2013–insurers are left without guidance or precedence on how to determine whether they should raise premiums for members who smoke e-cigarettes, reported the St. Louis Post-Dispatch . The Affordable Care Act states insurers can add […]