Home | Legislative Summary: 1/28/19

Legislative Summary: 1/28/19

January 28, 2019

MNAAP President-elect Sheldon Berkowitz, MD, FAAP, appeared before the Senate Health and Human Services Committee on January 24.  Committee Chair Sen. Michelle Benson issued the invitation to provide an update for committee members on an emerging issue in child health: the impact of screen time.  Dr. Berkowitz, a pediatrician at Children’s Hospital and Clinics of Minnesota, shared with the committee the latest research on screen time and children and adolescents, and shared with legislators how he discusses these issues with parents.

Tobacco control efforts took a big step forward in recent days with the introduction of bipartisan bills to raise the minimum age to purchase products containing nicotine from 18 to 21.  Almost two dozen communities and counties have already increased the age to purchase.  In addition, a bill to fund tobacco and nicotine cessation was dropped, as was legislation to extend the prohibition on the use of e-cigarettes indoors to all public spaces.  The bills have drawn a strong group of bipartisan authors in both the House and Senate.

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