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July 18, 2019

Around the nation: New York raises legal age to purchase tobacco to 21

Daily Briefing

    Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he hopes the new law will "stop cigarettes and e-cigarettes from getting into the hands of young people in the first place," in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from the District of Columbia, New York, and Washington.

    • District of Columbia: The Biden Cancer Initiative on Monday announced that it has indefinitely suspended all operations. The nonprofit, which was founded by former Vice President Joe Biden and his wife, Jill, has worked to promote cancer research since 2017. "We are suspending activities given our unique circumstances," Greg Simon, president of the nonprofit in a statement. Simon explained that after the Bidens stepped down as the organization's co-chairs and members of the board of directors when Biden announced his presidential campaign, the organization struggled to attract financial support. "We remain personally committed to the cause, but at this time will have to pause efforts," Simon said (McGinley, Washington Post, 7/15; Braun, Washington Post, 7/15).

    • New York: Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday signed into law a bill (S.2833/A.558) that raises the legal age to purchase tobacco and e-cigarettes in the state from 18 to 21. Cuomo in a release said the move will "stop cigarettes and e-cigarettes from getting into the hands of young people." The bill will go into effect in November. (Klar, The Hill, 7/16).

    • Washington: A nurse at Seattle Children's Hospital was diagnosed with measles after contracting the disease from an infected patient, despite having been vaccinated against measles and wearing protective equipment while treating the patient. The hospital said the nurse may have been contagious while working shifts from July 8-10. The hospital in a statement said it is "in the process of notifying patients, families, and staff who may have been exposed, providing information about exposure dates, disease symptoms, and offering preventative treatment if necessary." Separately, James Apa of Public Health-Seattle & King County, said while there is a slim chance people who have been vaccinated can contract measles, getting the vaccine "can help to lessen [the] symptoms [of those who have been infected] and potentially reduce their chance of spreading the disease to others" (Bean, Becker's Hospital Review, 7/16; Q13 Fox, 7/15).

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