advocacy

Dear Research Advocate, With Congress back from Thanksgiving break, there is new energy to carry the FY16 budget across the finish line. One of the ways we registered our position against riders on the budget bill was to participate earlier this afternoon in a “Twitter Town Hall” organized by the Clean Budget Coalition. Individuals from a wide array of organizations joined this worthwhile effort. When it comes to delays in passing new spending for research and other urgent national priorities, time actually is money-- money that could be put to use immediately to find the solutions to what ails us! We are continuing to highlight the importance of repealing, or more realistically, suspending...
Over the next three weeks, Congress has an opportunity to reverse decades of declining support for a program that is vital to our nation’s public health. House and Senate appropriators will soon determine how to allocate $25 billion in additional non-defense discretionary spending for fiscal year (FY) 2016 before the continuing resolution expires on December 11. They now have the opportunity to address the damage resulting from years’ long stagnation in federally-funded research and reinvest in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Supporters of Research!America are fully aware of the decline in our federal research enterprise. The lack of...
Dear Research Advocate, The shocking attacks in Beirut and Paris serve as reminders of the global interconnectedness of our society. In so many ways, the tragedies others face are also ours and their challenges are our challenges, health challenges very much included. Last evening I interviewed Dr. Tamar Kokashvili, a grantee of CRDF Global, at their 20th anniversary dinner. Dr. Kokashvili, who hails from the nation of Georgia, collaborates with University of Maryland scientists to characterize genetic diversity of cholera bacteria (over 200 strains, complicating both diagnosis and treatment). Just in the last few weeks we have learned of cholera outbreaks in Syrian refugee camps, and...
This blog post is part of a weekly series focusing on different aspects of public health leading up to Public Health Thank You Day on Monday November 23, 2015. Join the conversation on social media with the hashtag #PHTYD and visit http://www.publichealththankyouday.org (link is external) for more information. In the United States, injuries kill more people between the ages of 1 and 44 than any other disease. To put this in perspective, each day 480 people die from injuries, one person every 3 minutes. This is the equivalent of a Boeing 777 crashing each day. Of course not everyone who is injured dies. Millions of people are hospitalized or treated in emergency departments. All of this...
The November 2015 issue of The Research Advocate is now online . Highlights from this month's issue include: The 2016 Advocacy Award recipients are announced. A federal policy update with details on the budget and appropriations agenda in Congress. Register for a webinar featuring AHRQ director, Dr. Kronick. A member spotlight featuring Shire. How you can be involved in Public Health Thank You Day on November 23. Download the entire November 2015 Research Advocate as a PDF.
Dear Research Advocate: Now that the President has signed off on the budget agreement, Appropriations Committee leadership is negotiating to establish the dollar level for each appropriations subcommittee to work with. Given the December 11 deadline for action, the committees are already working to set allocations for each federal agency and program. Here is a list of the Twitter handles for each House and Senate appropriator, along with suggested tweets. Please take a minute to tweet these leaders on why it is so important to increase funding for NIH, CDC, FDA, AHRQ and NSF; federal agencies that help keep the wheels of science and medical progress turning! It’s a mistake to just assume...
While the annual flu vaccine saves thousands of lives every year , most people don’t give much thought to the work that takes place behind the scenes to determine what’s in that injection. The US has a system for national influenza surveillance which collects data from across the US to identify which influenza viruses are circulating, if the current season’s vaccine is a good match, and which viruses should be included in the next year’s vaccine. Preparations for next season’s flu vaccine start at the beginning of each flu season. In fact, it is the specimens collected at the beginning of each new flu season that help inform vaccine virus selection for the next year. Public health...
Dear Research Advocate, Former VP candidate and Ways and Means Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI-01) appears poised to become the next Speaker of the House. This turn of events improves the outlook for a budget deal, potentially including FY16 funding, sequestration relief for one or two years, and a new debt limit. See our letter with United for Medical Research and two major defense industry associations on the negative consequences of sequestration. Senate HELP Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) made news this week reaffirming his willingness to consider mandatory spending for NIH in his Innovation Initiative. To turn “maybe” into “yes,” advocates must be heard. Earlier this week, a...
National Patient Advocate Foundation (NPAF) represents the patient’s voice nationwide, particularly those struggling with chronic, debilitating or life-threatening illness. As the advocacy affiliate of the Patient Advocate Foundation, which provides free case management and copay relief services to thousands of patients across the country, we translate the experience of patients who have been denied access to affordable, quality health care into national and state policy initiatives. The patients served by the Patient Advocate Foundation often experience major financial barriers to accessing the care they need. Because the majority of these patients are insured, these barriers manifest...
A strong majority of Americans (81%) say medicines available today have improved their quality of life and even more (91%) say it is important to develop better medicines for conditions we currently treat, according to a national public opinion survey commissioned by Research!America. But many respondents say candidates for President and Congress have done a poor job relating to the health expectations of Americans. Less than a quarter of respondents say candidates running for Congress listen to and understand the health concerns of Americans, and one-third say the same for presidential candidates. A majority of African-Americans, Hispanics, Asians and non-Hispanic whites all agree that...

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Without research, there is no hope.
The Honorable Paul G. Rogers