Senator Smith believes that every person deserves access to affordable, high-quality health care. That’s why, as Lieutenant Governor, she fought to protect, improve, and expand access to health care coverage for Minnesotans. And now that she’s in the Senate, Sen. Smith is continuing that fight as a member of the Senate Health Committee and a leader in the Rural Health Caucus.
A top priority for Sen. Smith is addressing the high cost of healthcare. Too many Minnesotans are burdened by the high cost of their health care coverage, and others are going without insurance. That’s why 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.
Sen. Smith is committed to working in a bipartisan way to make sure our current health care system works for everyone. That said, she will oppose any efforts to limit coverage for Minnesotans, slash Medicaid, and deny coverage to people with preexisting conditions. Minnesotans and people across this country rely on their health coverage and any attempt to take that away is unacceptable.
Protecting coverage for Minnesotans includes defending vital programs like Medicaid, Medicare, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Over one million Minnesotans are covered by Medicaid and CHIP, many of whom are children, pregnant women, seniors, and people with disabilities. Cuts to Medicaid or other federal health programs would hurt families, particularly in rural and underserved communities. That’s why Sen. Smith will fight hard to make sure that Minnesotans can continue to rely on these programs now and in the future.
In her previous role as Lieutenant Governor, Sen. Smith championed efforts to tackle the opioid and drug abuse epidemic that’s ravaging communities in Minnesota and across the country. At the federal level, she plans to continue that fight, pushing for increased funding so that state and tribal leaders, health care professionals, law enforcement, and all those affected by this epidemic can effectively tackle opioid addiction and other alcohol and substance use disorders. Sen. Smith will also advocate for commonsense policies that make sure insurers and providers treat mental illness and substance abuse disorders in the same way they treat physical illnesses.
Throughout her life, Sen. Smith been a tireless champion for women’s health and a woman’s right to make decisions about her own health care. As Senator, she can assure you that won’t change.
Letter Follows Up on August Letter Questioning Azar about Blaming PBMs and Drug Distributors for High Drug Prices
Washington, DC - United States Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Tina Smith (D-Minn.) today sent their second letter to Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar about his potentially misleading statements during Senate testimony in which he blamed pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) and drug distributors for drug manufacturers' ongoing refusal to meaningfully reduce their prices.
Legislation Signed by President Includes Senator’s Measure to Expand Mental Health Services in Schools, Especially for Children Living in Rural Areas
WASHINGTON, D.C. [10/24/18]—U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) helped write the bipartisan opioids legislation that the President signed into law today, which gives Minnesota and the nation the tools to combat the crisis by investing in long-term prevention, treatment, and recovery efforts.
Sen. Tina Smith: Bipartisan Bill to Help Patients in Minnesota, Across the Country
Pay Lower Prices for Prescription Drugs One Step Closer to Becoming Law
Senate-Passed Measure Preventing “Gag Clauses”
Also Passes House; Ready to be Signed by President
WASHINGTON, D.C. [09/18/18]—U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.)—along with Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.)—are leading bipartisan legislation to help develop innovative ways to reduce unnecessary administrative cost burdens.
Includes Senator’s Measure to Expand Mental Health Services in Schools, Especially for Children Living in Rural Areas
WASHINGTON, D.C. [09/17/18]—U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) said the bipartisan opioids legislation that passed the Senate today—which Sen. Smith helped write—will give Minnesota and the nation important tools to combat an epidemic that has already claimed too many lives and decimated too many families.
Senator says Measure would Hold Drug Companies Accountable For High Prices,
Bring Down Costs for Seniors, Families and Taxpayers
Senator Seeks Evidence that Drug Maker has Reported
Payments to Former Trump Lawyer Michael Cohen
WASHINGTON D.C. [08/23/18]— Today, U.S. Sen. Tina Smith (D-Minn.) pushed for answers from Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis on improper financial and lobbying efforts – including a $1.2 million dollar payment to President Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen - that could be contributing to high prescription drug prices for people in Minnesota and across the country.
Senators Question Whether Secretary is Coordinating with Pharma to Deflect Responsibility for President Trump's Broken Promise to Reduce Drug Prices