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Sen. Kaine (D-VA) bill to raise tobacco age to 21 included in bipartisan health care package

U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, released the following statement on the bipartisan health care agreement announced Sunday.

Four of Kaine’s bills were included in this comprehensive package: one to raise the tobacco age to 21, one to improve the nation’s public health data systems, one to expand health care to rural areas through telehealth, and provisions of a bill to increase patent transparency for biologic drugs.

Kaine was quoted in a news release as saying, “I’m excited that my reforms to improve our health care system were included in this bipartisan package, including my bill with Leader McConnell to raise the tobacco age to 21. Our nation is facing a youth e-cigarette epidemic, and this legislation is a critical step to help keep tobacco products out of kids’ hands.”

The news release also quoted Kaine as saying, “I’m pleased this package also includes my legislation with Senators Isakson and King to boost our ability to respond quickly to health threats like the recent outbreak of vaping-linked lung injuries. Countless people will benefit from the expansion of telehealth in rural areas, greater patent transparency for innovative treatments, and reforms to stop the surprise medical bills that have wreaked financial havoc on families. This is a good compromise, and I hope we’ll quickly pass it into law.”

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