sequestration

Dear Research Advocate, The first presidential debate gave us little to go on regarding research for health. Americans are dying to know more ’€“ many, quite literally dying ’€“ about what either presidential candidate would do to speed up medical progress in the face of Alzheimer’€™s disease, Parkinson’€™s disease, ALS and the host of other disabling and deadly health threats that breed suffering, compromise independence and drive spiraling health care costs. Add to that the pivotal role medical innovation plays in our economy, and Americans absolutely deserve to know whether candidates will champion or shortchange it. All of us must say to candidates: Tell us what you will do, share your...
Dear Research Advocate, To call attention to the unintended consequences of the sequester, we held a press briefing today in partnership with United for Medical Research. Two Members of Congress who are still in town, Reps. Ed Markey (D-MA) and Brian Bilbray (R-CA), spoke about the high priority the nation must place on NIH and about the usefulness of data from a new national public opinion poll showing that 51% of Americans say that across-the-board cuts are not the right way to reduce the deficit. To see more poll results for use in your advocacy, click here . Other speakers this morning spoke about what’€™s at stake for everyone who cares about the research enterprise: patient hopes for...
Dear Research Advocate, Congress is back in Washington but still in campaign mode, making its decisions with the election very much in mind. A 6-month continuing resolution (C.R.) is expected to pass momentarily. The C.R. would put off appropriations decision-making until the new Congress has gotten under way, flat-funding the government through March of next year at fiscal 2012 levels. The atmosphere of fiscal uncertainty for the agencies that fund research, and everyone seeking that funding, is in fact demoralizing in the extreme. Compounding the problem is that the C.R. does nothing to address the looming problem of sequestration, which is scheduled to take effect on January 2, 2013. The...
Dear Research Advocate, As the political conventions get underway, we have further evidence that voters want candidates to make research for health a prominent issue, now and after the election. Our latest national public opinion poll, conducted a week ago, shows voters want to elect candidates who value and highly prioritize the importance of medical progress. Among the highlights: 90% say it’€™s important for candidates to address medical research; 59% say elected officials in Washington are not paying enough attention to combating deadly diseases, so much so that 63% say the next president should announce initiatives promoting medical progress in his ’€œfirst 100 days in office.’€ And...
The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) has launched a new initiative which focuses on the myriad benefits of health and medical research, particularly as it relates to patient care. The initiative, titled From Hope to Cures , uses patient videos as well as statistical evidence and graphics to illustrate how the billions of dollars spent by pharmaceutical companies on research are extending and enriching the lives of millions of people. This new initiative represents a push for research, progress, and hope. There are numerous items on the initiative’€™s website including links to articles ranging from drug discovery and development to a study which predicts...
Dear Research Advocate, With Rep. Paul Ryan joining the Romney ticket, health is back on the national agenda. Partisan politics aside, this conversation is overdue, since health is indeed an issue that will make or bankrupt us. Research has always figured prominently in the wellbeing of Americans and America ’€“ research brought an end to the polio epidemic, which could have bankrupted the nation in the 1950s, and research is the only answer to the scourge of Alzheimer’€™s that threatens health, quality of life and our national checkbook today. And that is just a starting point for the conversation I hope you are having with everyone who wants to talk about the election. Take the...
Dear Research Advocate, American achievement continues to astound. This week we watched NASA’€™s Jet Propulsion Laboratory send one of the most advanced space exploration vehicles ever constructed to a planet hundreds of millions of miles away from Earth and elegantly deliver it to the planet’€™s surface. Mars today, why not a cure for our nation’€™s deadliest diseases tomorrow? As advocates, we cannot take no for answer when it comes to assuring we have the resources, policies and determination we need to defeat disease and disability. Why should we be reluctant to demand that this be a national priority? As Margaret Mead once said, ’€œNever doubt that a small group of thoughtful,...
Dear Research Advocate, Sequestration, the looming fiscal cliff, a dangerous House appropriations bill ’€“ all were addressed in our members-only call yesterday with Chairman John Porter. As Porter pointed out, we have to keep the big picture in mind, pushing for tax and entitlement reform as part of the larger ’€œfix,’€ AND, in the immediate, we have to cry foul about the House bill and sequestration. Right now, while Congress is still in session, we must flood their offices, and the Administration, with calls and e-mails. Take 30 seconds to send a message to your representatives to remind them that medical research should be among our nation’€™s highest priorities. And – as was...
Dear Research Advocate, What do sequencing and sequestration have in common, besides being mysterious words to most people? It’€™s pretty simple: We won’€™t have more of the former if the latter takes place. Why isn’€™t it a Sputnik moment to learn that there is more sequencing capacity at Beijing Genome Institute than we have total capacity in our country? And, to learn that the Chinese government is subsidizing the cost of sequencing so that it is fast becoming the go-to place for industry and academia worldwide? It’€™s time for advocates to talk this up so that policy makers will once again plus-up research as a U.S. priority. Jeffrey Zients, the Acting Director of the White House Office...
A graphic from a recent amfAR report shows the potential loss of life because of across-the-board cuts, or sequestration. Research!America’s report on sequestration detailed the devastating impact that the sequester, or across-the-board cuts that are scheduled to take place in 2013, will have on federally funded research to improve health. Now, a recent report by amfAR trains the focus of sequestration on global health. Just as we found, amfAR reaches the same conclusion: Sequestration isn’t worth the cost. The cuts would save $689 million ’€” or 0.63% of the required deficit reduction for FY13. And at what cost? HIV/AIDS treatment for 273,000 fewer people, potentially leading to 62,000...

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Sidebar Quote

The capabilities are enormous, a little bit of research can pay off quite a bit in the long run.
Paul D’ Addario, retinitis pigmentosa patient