Washington, DC – July 14, 2017 – The Academy for Radiology & Biomedical Imaging Research issued the following statement in response to the draft fiscal year (FY) 2018 spending bill released July 12 by the House Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee (Labor-HHS).
The Academy greatly appreciates the Subcommittee’s continued support of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) as a key national priority in the FY 2018 Labor-HHS spending bill. Unlike the president’s budget request, which would seriously undermine medical research, the Subcommittee’s bill increases the NIH budget by nearly $1 billion and rejects arbitrary and damaging proposals to restructure NIH funding.
While we are grateful that the draft bill stands in stark contrast to the president’s budget proposal, we note that the Subcommittee faced an impossible challenge from the outset due to its inadequate spending allocation. If the United States is to continue to accelerate the development of life-changing cures, pioneering treatments, and innovative prevention strategies, it is essential to ensure strong, predictable funding growth above inflation. To fully achieve this widely-recognized goal and enable needed investment across the broad spectrum of health priorities, this bill demonstrates that a bipartisan budget agreement that increases the spending caps are needed.
Thanks in large part to the Subcommittee’s leadership, the national commitment to medical research in recent years has never been stronger, advancing progress in science across the biomedical research enterprise. The Academy will work with lawmakers toward an increase of at least $2 billion for NIH in FY 2018, in addition to funding included in the 21st Century Cures Act for targeted initiatives, as recommended by over 300 organizations. Additionally, we urge the Subcommittee to reconsider problematic policy provisions in the bill that would hinder the critical work of researchers across the nation and stymie the bipartisan support needed for timely enactment of a strong final NIH funding level.
The Academy for Radiology & Biomedical Imaging Research is an alliance of academic radiology departments, professional imaging societies, patient advocacy groups, and industry partners. Its mission is to raise the profile of imaging research and ensure a sustainable imaging research budget within the federal government.
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