Research!America applauds the funding levels included in the draft appropriations bill (press summary) released by the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Subcommittee.
We are grateful to Labor-HHS Subcommittee Chair Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) and ranking member Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO) for their leadership in ensuring critically important medical research and public health investments are being prioritized in the Federal budget.
National Institutes of Health (NIH)
The bill would provide an increase of $2.6 billion to the core budget of the National Institutes of Health, 6% over last year. Stronger NIH funding will empower researchers to accelerate progress against future pandemics and the host of diseases and conditions that cause untold suffering and cut lives short. The bill would also provide $2.4 billion to stand up a new agency, “ARPA-H,” a health innovation incubator that would empower high risk/high reward science aimed at accelerating progress against existing and emergent health threats.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
The draft legislation provides a critically needed $1.86 billion increase to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention budget, a 24% increase over last fiscal year, including a $600 million investment in strengthening the nation’s public health infrastructure. The CDC is our nation’s front line — not only against pandemics, but against the opioid crisis, antibiotic-resistant “superbugs,” disparities in health and health care, and everyday threats to communities nationwide. The draft legislation would help revitalize an agency that has faced years of inadequate funding and bolster its capacity to address a range of increasingly worrisome public health threats.
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality — another historically underfunded agency — would also see a strategically significant funding increase. AHRQ funds health services researchers who produce the evidence needed to assure patients are receiving the right care in the right setting at the right time, maximizing the return on medical progress. AHRQ-funded research focused on optimizing care has led to federal savings that dwarf the funding AHRQ receives each year.
To confront rapidly evolving threats and seize the unprecedented scientific opportunities before us, our nation needs an updated budget. We urge both parties and both houses of Congress to act with urgency to agree upon FY22 funding levels that empower the life-saving, prosperity-producing, and security-enhancing progress Americans deserve and our nation needs.
The Senate Labor-HHS draft appropriations bill reflects the need to treat health-focused research as a national imperative. We urge all of Congress to work together to ensure robust funding; progress against disease coupled with a vital public health system are prerequisites for our nation to thrive.
Contact Tim Haynes, Senior Director of Communications, at 571-482-2737 or firstname.lastname@example.org with press inquiries.