On July 29 the Senate Appropriations Committee reported out the following three FY 2011 Appropriations bills by a vote of 18-12: State and Foreign Operations, and Related Agencies, Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies and Financial Services and General Government.
The full committee approved the LHHS Subcommittee Chairman’s Mark that was approved on July 27. The bill includes a $1 billion increase (from $31 billion to $32 billion) for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which is identical to the President’s and the Senate’s FY 2011 budget request as well as the House’s FY 2011 LHHS Subcommittee bill. The bill also includes $50 million for the Cures Acceleration Network (CAN), which will be under the jurisdiction of the NIH’s Office of the Director.
Below is a brief breakdown of the NIH and CAN funding:
National Institutes of Health—The bill provides $32 billion, an increase of $1 billion, to fund biomedical research at the NIH. The 3.5 percent increase is equal to the rate of biomedical inflation.
Cures Acceleration Network—The bill includes $50 million to create a new Cures Acceleration Network within the NIH that will help speed the translation and application of discoveries that have shown signs of success at the laboratory level but have not advanced far enough to attract significant investments from the private sector.
The full House Appropriations committee will mark up its bill after the August recess, followed by a vote on the entire House floor. With limited time remaining in this session, Congress is likely to pass a continuing resolution (funding the government at FY 2010 levels) on or around September 30, followed by an omnibus spending package in December or January, where FY 2011 funding for NIH will be decided.