Health Care

Senator Smith believes that every person deserves affordable, high-quality health care. As a member of the Senate Health Committee and a leader in the bipartisan Rural Health Caucus, Sen. Smith is fighting to protect, improve, and expand comprehensive health care coverage for Minnesotans.

A top priority for Sen. Smith is addressing the high cost of health care. Too many Minnesotans are burdened by the high cost of their health care coverage, and others are going without insurance or prescription medications. Sen. Smith is working with her colleagues on both sides of the aisle to address the underlying issues that make health care expensive, starting with the high price of prescription drugs.

While working to make health care more affordable, Sen. Smith is also working to ensure that every Minnesotan has access to mental health care, which she believes is an essential part of comprehensive health coverage. She is working to enforce federal laws that require equitable coverage of mental health and medical care, and she is fighting for expanded access to mental health services across the age continuum.

Sen. Smith also opposes any efforts to limit coverage for Minnesotans, slash Medicaid or Medicare, deny coverage to people with preexisting conditions, and interfere with a woman’s right to make decisions about her own health care. Minnesotans and people across this country rely on their health coverage, and believes that any attempt to take that away is unacceptable.

Finally, Sen. Smith is a champion for rural communities, who face unique barriers that limit their access to quality, affordable health care. As co-chair of the bipartisan Rural Health Caucus, Sen. Smith is working with her colleagues to eliminate the health disparities between rural and urban communities.

Latest Releases

U.S. Senator Tina Smith’s Bipartisan Bill to Improve Rural Health Care Signed Into Law

WASHINGTON [01/06/23] – U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) and John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Co-Chairs of the Senate Rural Health Caucus, announced that their bipartisan bill to improve rural health care was signed into law by President Biden. The State Offices of Rural Health (SORH) Reauthorization Act of 2022 will reauthorize a key program that supports health facilities in rural areas across the country. “When I meet with families, farmers, businesses and community leaders in greater Minnesota, one of the first issues that comes up is health care,” said Smith. “This bipartisan legislation will help make sure State Offices of Rural Health have the resources they need to expand and improve health care services in rural communities. I’m proud of our work to get this bill signed into law and help address the unique health care needs of rural America.” “As a doctor, I have seen how this critical program benefits clinics and hospitals in rural areas across Wyoming. I am pleased to see the president sign our bill to reauthorize this important program into law,” said Barrasso. “Now, we can ensure Wyoming’s Office of Rural Health continues to have the necessary resources needed to give our patients the highest quality of care they deserve.” This bill supports State Offices of Rural Health by extending a successful law on information-sharing, technical assistance, and care delivery in rural settings. Under the bill, the program will be reauthorized for five years, which will preserve the program’s flexibility to meet the needs of providers and

U.S. Senator Tina Smith Statement on Recent Decisions by FDA and Justice Department Protecting Access to Medication Abortion

WASHINGTON [1/6/22] – Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) released the following statement on recent announcements by the FDA and Justice Department regarding the availability of abortion pills: “These two decisions by the Justice Department and the FDA are big steps in the right direction and will ensure millions of women across the country have access to medication abortion. But these decisions can be overturned by a future administration and we need more permanent solutions. By attacking and undermining access to safe and effective medications, Republicans are saying that government – not women, not their health care providers – should decide what’s best for women. As we enter the new year, I will continue working to pass my legislation protecting access to medication abortion and restore the reproductive freedoms Republicans have ripped away.”  This week, the FDA announced that abortion pills will soon be available for purchase at local U.S. pharmacies with a prescription. Additionally, the Justice Department cleared the U.S. Postal Service to deliver abortion pills in states with strict anti-abortion laws.

Senator Smith’s Bipartisan Legislation to Secure Health Care for Veterans Exposed to Radiation Passes Senate

WASHINGTON, D.C. [8.3.22] – Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-MN) announced that her bipartisan legislation securing health care benefits for “Atomic Veterans” who were exposed to harmful radiation has passed the Senate and is headed to President Biden’s desk. The bill was passed as part of the historic Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring Our PACT Act, which ensures millions of veterans exposed to noxious fumes emanating from burn pits will have access to Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) care and benefits. It is co-led by Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC). The Mark Takai Atomic Veterans Healthcare Parity Act would allow veterans

Senator Smith Announces Passage of Historic Bill to Ensure Veterans Receive the Health Care They’ve Earned

WASHINGTON, D.C. [8.3.22] – Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-MN) announced the Senate passed the most significant expansion of benefits and health services for veterans in more than 30 years. The historic Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring Our PACT Act ensures millions of veterans exposed to noxious fumes emanating from burn pits will have access to Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) care and benefits.  The bill’s passage comes after Senate Republicans voted to block the bipartisan deal last week, which many of them had previously voted for. The bill will now head to President Biden’s desk where it will

Senators Smith, Booker Introduce Legislation to Affirm Federal Regulation of Reproductive Health Products

WASHINGTON, D.C. [8.2.22] – Today, U.S. Senators Tina Smith (D-MN) and Cory Booker (D-NJ) introduced legislation that affirms the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) long standing preemptive authority over state law for all FDA-approved reproductive health products, including drugs used in medication abortion. The U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause prohibits states from interfering with the federal government’s power to regulate drugs. The Protecting National Access to Reproductive Care Act codifies this preemptive power and the Department of Justice’s authority to enforce federal laws and regulations. It also provides private individuals, and health care providers an avenue to sue states with laws

Smith, Colleagues Introduce Legislation to Allow Use of U.S. Foreign Assistance for Abortion Care Oversees

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-MN) joined a group of her colleagues in introducing legislation that would allow U.S. foreign assistance to be used to provide the full scope of comprehensive health care, including safe and legal access to abortion services. The Abortion is Health Care Everywhere Act, led by Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ), would repeal the 1973 Helms Amendment to the Foreign Assistance Act and clarify that under U.S. government policy, safe abortion care is a critical component of comprehensive maternal and reproductive care. “Abortion care is a fundamental component of comprehensive reproductive health care and

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