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Maine senator backs push for better public health data

June 16, 2019

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Maine’s independent senator is among a group of lawmakers backing a bill that calls for the modernization of public health data systems.

Sen. Angus King says the proposal would ensure accurate and timely information sharing to help protect residents from health threats like viruses and prescription drug abuse. He’s joined by Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia and Republican Sen. Johnny Isakson of Georgia on the proposal.

King says the bill is important because “you can’t make good policy without good data.” The bill would dedicate $100 million every year for the next five fiscal years to better public health data.

The money would award grants to public health departments to improve data collection and analysis. It would also help develop public-private partnerships to expand and modernize systems.

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