Friends of NIA was pleased to join more than 300 organizations in signing on to a letter urging a meaningful increase in the FY20 LHHS-Ed bill to enable quick enactment of a robust funding increase for NIH. Many members of the Friends of NIA supported the letter as well.
The House-passed spending package and the draft bill released by the Senate Appropriations Committee on Sept. 18 would continue the momentum of recent years by providing NIH with a meaningful funding increase over the previous year. In particular, the $42.1 billion proposed in the Senate bill would offer even greater opportunity to expand NIH’s capacity to fund more promising research, provide support for the next generation of researchers, and allow the agency to address other critical needs. Despite the strong bipartisan support for medical research, we are concerned that NIH is currently operating under a continuing resolution (CR), rather than under its final, full-year funding level. Aside from the budget implications, CRs create inefficiencies and uncertainty for both the agency and scientists across the country. Any further delay in finalizing FY 2020 funding levels – or, worse, reverting to a long-term stopgap that freezes funding at the levels in FY 2019 – would slow our progress toward cures and ultimately impede our ability to address major public health challenges.