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HEALTH CARE

More than 5M on Medicare use free preventive care

The Obama administration says more than 5 million seniors have taken advantage of one or more preventive services that Medicare started covering free of charge this year because of the new health care law.

Nonetheless, officials launched a publicity campaign Monday to raise awareness about the new benefits. An annual checkup is included, as well as specific tests for such conditions as osteoporosis, different kinds of cancer that affect men and women, and heart problems. Counseling for smokers who want to quit is also covered.

REGULATORY

Food, drug safety requires joint effort with importers

U.S. food and drug regulators would share more information with their foreign counterparts as part of a multifaceted strategy to police the safety of millions of imported goods.

A Food and Drug Administration report issued Monday lays out plans to deal with the flood of imports, which have quadrupled over the past decade, by computerizing systems for tracking imports and collaborating more closely with regulators in developing countries.

The report paints a daunting picture for regulators. Nearly two-thirds of all fruits and vegetables consumed in the United States are imports, while 80 percent of pharmaceutical ingredients are imported from abroad.

SUPREME COURT

Justices to hear case based on Lewis and Clark notes

The Supreme Court is entering a $40 million dispute between an energy company and Montana that could turn on the experiences of the Lewis and Clark expedition.

The justices said Monday they will hear an appeal from PPL Montana of a state court decision ordering the company to pay $40 million in rent for placing its hydroelectric dams in riverbeds owned by the state.

The ownership of the waterways turns on whether they were navigable when Montana became a state in 1889. Both the company and the state base part of their argument on the journey of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark more than 200 years ago.

CONGRESS

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