research

Americans largely think the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed major changes needed to public health systems. We asked participants to select from two statements: “The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed that major changes are needed in our public health systems, including more funding” or “The COVID-19 pandemic is a once-in-a-lifetime event and existing systems are dealing with it adequately.” Seven in 10 said they believed that major changes are needed to our public health systems. Though pandemic preparedness is an important component of public health systems, Americans also need these systems to address long-standing public health challenges like the opioid crisis. When asked about opioid abuse...
According to a January 2021 survey commissioned by Research!America, most Americans (72%) cannot name a living scientist. Similarly, over half of Americans could not name a medical or health research institution, and 43% were unaware that medical research is conducted in all 50 U.S. states. However, the number saying they could name a living scientist increased from just 20% in 2017 to 27% in the most recent survey. The increased visibility of science during the COVID-19 pandemic may be behind this jump. Pfizer and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention topped the list of named research institutions. Despite this lack of visibility, those polled largely held scientists in high...
According to results from a Zogby Analytics survey commissioned by Research!America in January 2021, a majority of Americans support research investment. More than 75% believe investing in research is important for achieving key priorities, from economic recovery and job creation to preventing and curing illnesses to maintaining global competitiveness. Three-quarters strongly or somewhat favor doubling federal spending on research over the next five years, and 6 in 10 say they would be willing to pay more in taxes if that money would be spent on medical research. Support for funding university research is high, with about 80% approval for federal and state funding of university research...
While the United States has been the uncontested leader in research & development (R&D) spending for decades, global trends in R&D investment pose a growing threat to U.S. leadership. The share of U.S. GDP devoted public R&D investment continues to shrink, threatening our ability to firmly stand on the cutting edge of scientific innovation. Nearly 90% of Americans say it is important for the U.S. to be a global leader in health and scientific research. Eight in 10 believe it is important for the U.S. to set and achieve a goal of spending 3%-5% of the GDP on research and development, as countries like Japan and Korea have done. Currently, the U.S. spends 0.7% of its GDP on...
Although climate change is often portrayed as a polarizing issue, it is a significant concern for Americans, according to a Research!America survey. Well over half of those surveyed said that climate change is already harming their own health, and similar numbers believe climate change is harming the health of others in their household, of Americans in general, and of people around the world. Two-thirds believe climate change will harm their own health “a great deal” or “a moderate amount” in the next 10 years, and only 14% said they believed climate change would not harm their health or the health of their household at all in the next 10 years. Multiple systems, including public health...
According to a Research!America survey, a large majority of Americans support research to eliminate health disparities. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted health disparities that exist along racial, ethnic, geographic, and economic lines. However, these disparities - in rates of chronic illnesses, in infant mortality, and in health outcomes - existed long before the pandemic. Research into the underlying causes and solutions can help eliminate these disparities in the future. Americans largely support research looking into health disparities, with over half saying it is very important to conduct this type of research. Check out our Public Opinion Polls page to see the full results from...
Dear Research Advocate: Happy Thanksgiving Week! I’m writing early to give us all a holiday. Last Thursday and Friday, l capped off a week of visiting our members at the McKnight Brain Institute (MBI) and the Health Science Center at the University of Florida. Research!America Chair Emeritus, and former member of Congress, the Honorable John Edward Porter, joined me at a Town Hall session during which students, postdocs, faculty, and administrators asked about the best ways to make the case for research with the current and new Congress. At MBI we heard patient advocate extraordinaire Jennifer French, Neurotech Network Executive Director, forcefully articulate the importance of a needed “...
Dear Research Advocate: At our post-election briefing this morning at AAAS in Washington, DC, the discussion focused on opportunities for advocacy given the composition and characteristics of the new Congress, and the importance of building new champions from among the nearly 100 new members of Congress. Of note — at last count, there are seven science-trained new members, a very welcome development! There is no doubt that a divided Congress can cause gridlock, but inaction is not a foregone conclusion, as was emphasized by our Chair, the Hon. Michael N. Castle. There are important, science-relevant issues, such as infrastructure, STEM education, and the opioid crisis, that both parties...
Dear Research Advocate: I am especially pleased to report that the House passed the Labor-H/Defense FY19 appropriations conference report yesterday, by a vote of 361-61. The President has said he will sign the bill, thus avoiding a partial government shutdown with its myriad negative consequences (including the toll on medical and public health progress). Please do as we have and say thank you to Congressional leadership for passing this bill in timely fashion, with funding that supports putting research to work to find the solutions to what ails us. Of particular note, the bill includes a $2 billion increase for NIH, as well as increases for other federal health agencies under HHS auspices...
Stigma remains a top barrier to treatment for mental illness among minority groups, said panelists during a Capitol Hill briefing hosted by Research!America, the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), the National Hispanic Medical Association (NHMA) and the National Medical Association on June 13, 2018. Panelists stressed the importance of stakeholder collaboration, increased minority representation in health care fields and patient advocacy to help overcome mental health disparities. Andrew Sperling, director of legislative and policy advocacy at the National Alliance on Mental Illness, moderated the discussion. Mental illness is generally considered a taboo subject in the...

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You can change the image of things to come. But you can’t do it sitting on your hands … The science community should reach out to Congress and build bridges.
The Honorable John E. Porter