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Research!America is dedicated to ensuring a strong public and private sector investment in research to improve health at a level warranted by scientific opportunity and supported by public opinion. Member organizations and others share their perspectives on a wide variety of topics relating to public and private sector research and innovation, and public health. The views expressed by contributors are their own and not the view of Research!America.

Recent Blog Posts

Dear Research Advocate, Our guest author this week is Ellie Dehoney, Research!America’s Vice President of Policy and Advocacy. Some long-awaited, promising news regarding the budget caps: congressional leaders and the White House have agreed in principle on a deal that would raise the discretionary budget caps for Fiscal Years 2020 and 2021 and raise the debt limit sufficiently to avoid another “cliff” for at least two years. There are (as there always seem to be) caveats: the amount by which the caps would increase is not yet public, negotiations continue on such variables as offsets, and we don’t yet know how the deal will fare with other than those members of Congress in leadership roles...
Infectious disease outbreaks. Opioid overdoses. Chemical exposures. When threats like these arise, we rely on public health surveillance efforts to identify and address them. However, our current systems are outdated and disjointed, hindering the ability of public health professionals to respond to such crises in a timely manner. On June 27, 2019, the Association of Public Health Laboratories (APHL), the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE), the Healthcare Information Management Systems Society (HIMSS), and the National Association for Public Health Statistics and Information Systems (NAPHSIS) held a Capitol Hill briefing focused on the critical need to update America’s...
Dear Research Advocate, For the remainder of the summer, we will have a series of guest authors writing Mary’s Weekly Letter. This week’s author is Mike Coburn, Research!America’s Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. Members of Congress are back in town following the Fourth of July holiday, and talks are taking place between Congressional leaders and the Administration to resolve the issue of the budget. Complicating matters is the need for Congress to pass and the Administration to approve an increase in the debt limit. Research!America sent a letter to Congressional leaders and the White House urging swift action. While news reports indicate the Administration is...
Just three months remain in the current fiscal year, and lawmakers in the House have made significant progress in moving 10 of 12 appropriations bills across the floor. These bills include significant and meaningful funding increases for health research and public health, exciting advocates about the potential to reinvigorate and advance innovation after years of funding cuts, budget stagnation, and making up lost ground. Lawmakers have made clear their support for science in both words and deeds. Unfortunately, making these promises a reality hinges entirely on Congress and the White House’s ability to stave off devastating cuts — 10% across the board — that are scheduled hit defense and...
More women die from pregnancy-related complications in the United States than in any other comparably developed nation . Around 700 women die from pregnancy-related causes annually in the U.S., with an additional 60,000 women suffering severe, pregnancy-related complications. Approximately three out of every five pregnancy-related deaths are preventable. “In a country of this size and wealth and level of innovation, [this] is an injustice,” said panel moderator Dr. Laurie Zephyrin, Vice President of Delivery System Reform at The Commonwealth Fund. She continued, “This is also about race — black women and native-American women are more likely to die.” Indeed, across the United States, black...
Dear Research Advocate, “Not only is it important to ask questions and find the answers, as a scientist I felt obligated to communicate with the world what we were learning.” Stephen Hawking This apt quotation serves as the preface to a newly released survey from ScienceCounts and the Alan Alda Foundation for Communicating Science. Their findings, coupled with those reported a few weeks ago by SigmaXi and Research!America, signal recognition that if science is to thrive, scientists themselves must help make the case. Both surveys indicate that scientists are very willing to become engaged -- more so than ever before, in my experience! This week, members of Congress are back home, but not...
On June 12, 2019, the Alliance for Aging Research, in partnership with the Michael J. Fox Foundation , held a Capitol Hill briefing on Parkinson’s disease. The briefing marked the release of the Parkinson’s Disease Fact Sheet , the latest publication in The Silver Book series, an almanac of resources on chronic diseases compiled by the Alliance for Aging Research. The fact sheet features a new study conducted by the Lewin Group on the economic burden of Parkinson’s Disease in the United States. The Michael J. Fox Foundation received the Research!America Isadore Rosenfeld Award for Impact on Public Opinion in 2003. Congressman Gus Bilirakis , Co-chair of the Congressional Caucus on Parkinson...
A total of “1.7 million Americans will receive a new cancer diagnosis this year,” announced Frederick Ryan , President, and CEO of The Washington Post , in his opening remarks for the Post’s Chasing Cancer event earlier this month. Sponsored by Tesaro and the George Washington Cancer Center, the event did not shy away from difficult topic matter. Still, there were bright spots. “Why does cancer seem to work better in terms of novel therapeutic discoveries than other areas?” Asked new Acting FDA Commissioner Ned Sharpless . He believes it’s in part because researchers have a “good biologic understanding of the problem,” something that may be lacking when it comes to other conditions. The “...
The summer 2019 edition of the Research!America newsletter , The Research Advocate, is now online. In this newsletter, you'll find information about the recent Wellcome Global Monitor report on global attitudes about science, Research!America's recent briefing on patient-centered research on rural heart health, the measles outbreak, and much more.
Dear Research Advocate, “June Gloom” is what the residents of Los Angeles call this past month’s weather. I was in California last week at the invitation of UC Riverside, which has, in addition to a robust portfolio of federally funded research, an inspiring commitment to the community. For the record, it wasn’t gloomy in Riverside, but then, the LA area is vast, and the overcast is closer to the ocean. There is a decent parallel here to the vastness of the landscape for support of research in Washington: the House passed two “minibus” appropriations packages this month that include significant increases for federal agencies that support research. This week we issued a statement about the...

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We have health challenges in this country that science will provide answers for if given the chance and we haven't given science that opportunity
Mary Woolley, President and CEO, Research!America