Blog

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 nation has already been operating for 48 days under a Continuing Resolution (CR) that flat-funds the government at FY21 levels — that’s 48 days too long. The current CR expires on December 3, only six legislative days away. We are hearing increasing concern on Capitol Hill that a full-year CR may be put into place. Under this drastic scenario, billions of dollars in expected, urgently needed FY22 research investment would evaporate. This isn’t a drill, it’s the real thing . We must increase the volume now for completing the FY22 appropriations process. Use our new graphic on your social media channels; Tweet Congressional leaders; email or call ( House | Senate...
Dear Research Advocate, As we honor our military veterans today, it’s worth noting that medical research has been part of the Veterans Health Administration’s core mission from its conception in 1946 when $1 million was committed to focus on improving prosthetics for World War II veterans. Since then, federal investment in veterans health research has grown to well over $1 billion annually and the VA is a leader in neuroscience and healthcare delivery research, among its many important focus areas. Veterans — and all of us — are healthier thanks to VA-supported medical research. (If you missed it earlier this year, watch our conversation with Dr. Carolyn Clancy, Assistant Under Secretary...
Dear Research Advocate, For more than a decade, Research!America and partners across the nation have devoted time on the Monday before Thanksgiving to honor and convey our gratitude to the public health workforce. Naming all the ways these dedicated individuals serve the individual and public good would make this letter novel-length; instead, let me simply ask you to mark your calendar and participate with us on Public Health Thank You Day ( #PHTYD ) on Monday, November 22, 2021. Visit www.PublicHealthThankYouDay.org for sample tweets, emails, and other customizable resources. Another Opportunity to Honor Heroes: The Clinical Research Forum’s annual Top 10 Clinical Research Achievement...
Dear Research Advocate, The National Retail Federation predicts Americans will spend $10.14 billion on Halloween this year; that’s almost double the $5.25 billion NIH will invest this year in research on dental/oral and craniofacial disease, diabetes, eating disorders, food allergies, nutrition, and obesity combined! I’m not suggesting we trade Halloween for medical research — by no means! The point is we can’t afford not to spend money on stopping disease in its tracks. (Our “ Research Takes Cents ” page offers additional eye-opening examples of consumer expenditures contrasted to research investment.) On the Hill: Speaking of the need for increased research funding, Congress has until...
Dear Research Advocate, The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) has announced the second phase of its The Time is Now: Advancing Equity in Science and Technology initiative. Americans are asked to share ideas in response to White House Science Advisor Dr. Eric Lander’s question: “How can we guarantee all Americans can fully participate in, and contribute to, science and technology?” Per Dr. Lander: “...different experiences and perspectives are the bedrock of new scientific and technological insights, because having everybody on the team is essential to America’s global competitiveness in the 21st century, and because it’s the right thing to do.” We couldn’t agree...
Dear Research Advocate, On the Hill: A number of research-related initiatives are in the mix — including major, multi-year investments in NSF and pandemic preparedness — as negotiations continue on the content and price tag of the reconciliation bill, also known as Build Back Better. The bill is distinct from the annual appropriations process, which has been put on hold until December 3 via a continuing resolution (CR). Readers of this letter will likely agree Congress should not wait until December before enacting a new budget for FY22. It is not possible to put debilitating health threats on hold, and meanwhile, early career researchers are again wondering whether their work will have a...
Featured below is a guest blog from one of our previous micrograntees, Politics Under The Microscope (PUTM). In January 2021, four graduate students from the Tri-Institutional Community of The Rockefeller University, Weill Cornell Medicine Center, and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, NY joined forces to use their Civic Engagement Microgrant to create a science policy podcast series. These rising scientists with backgrounds ranging from health policy to neuroscience to pharmacology investigate the intersections of science, policy, and legislation. (By the way- Don’t forget to submit your application for Research!America’s Civic Engagement Microgrant Initiative by...
Dear Research Advocate, This is a week to applaud science heroes, very much including Dr. Francis Collins, who announced he will be stepping down as Director of the NIH by year’s end. Although we will no longer have the benefit of Dr. Collins’ extraordinary leadership at the helm of NIH, we have no doubt that his powerful voice ( including the singing part! ) will continue to be heard. As Ellie Dehoney noted in a Bloomberg Law article : “The biggest concern is how any Administration could possibly fill the shoes of such an extraordinarily effective leader and advocate.” Key qualities to be sought in a new NIH leader are set out in Chapter 4 of a report entitled Beyond 2020: A Vision and...
Dear Research Advocate, On the Hill: Major deadlines (end of fiscal year, hitting the debt limit) and conflicting policy priorities (reconciliation and infrastructure bills) have triggered a frenetic atmosphere in Congress, leaving actions needed to address major national challenges very much up in the air. Today, both chambers passed a stopgap spending bill (“Continuing Resolution” or CR) flat-funding the government through early December; the measure is headed to the President’s desk to be signed before midnight. Here is an editable Tweet thanking Congressional leaders for preventing a government shutdown but urging them to act; not wait for the CR to expire before finalizing FY22...
Dear Research Advocate, The remainder of 2021 will test whether our nation heeds a warning that speakers at our National Health Research Forum last week stressed again and again: the U.S. can no longer conduct business as usual as existential threats mount. Instead, we need to gather the courage to see clearly, act boldly, and embrace change. Mikael Dolsten, MD, PhD, chief scientific officer and president, Worldwide Research, Development, and Medical, Pfizer Inc, and a Research!America board member, offered particularly compelling comments in this regard at our Forum: “I think we need to invest more in understanding: what does it take to create an innovation culture for the country? What...

Pages