The companies in this recent round of letters making claims for air purification included Vaniman Manufacturing Co. of Murrieta, CA, and EcoShield, LLC of San Diego.
FTC staff reviewed Vaniman Manufacturing’s website on April 27, 2020 and determined that it was unlawfully advertising that certain products prevent Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Prevention claims on Vaniman’s website included: “Which HEPA air purifiers can filter out the COVID-19 virus? No air purifier will capture the virus with 100% certainty – but HEPA air purifier like our Pure Breeze system and even our smaller Vanguard Gold Mobile can greatly help to reduce the spread AND capture the Covid virus in your home or workplace.”
On EcoShield LLC’s website and its social media websites, the firm was directing consumers to purchase Eco AirDoctor, a wearable device that the company says emits chlorine dioxide gas. FTC said it also reviewed in-store advertising for Eco AirDoctor at a local drug store in Seattle, WA. Claims included statements that Eco AirDoctor Portable’s active ingredient releases chlorine dioxide which is known to protect and disinfect against diseases such as influenza, common colds, bronchitis, tuberculosis, and respiratory infections.”
In another product area, a company called Infuze MD of Pleasant Hill, CA was sent a warning letter for advertising claims related to its “Immune Booster Kit” being used as way to treat COVID-19. While the kit included products for ingestion and inhalation, it also included “an extra-strength silver-based gel” that could be placed in “the nose to kill viruses before they enter the lungs.”
In all, the FTC has sent similar letters to almost 100 companies and individuals for selling a range of products such as vitamins, herbs, colloidal silver, teas, essential oils, and other products pitched as scientifically proven coronavirus treatments or preventatives, such as intravenous therapies with high doses of Vitamin C, ozone therapy, and purported stem cell treatments.