Funding Vital Research Policy Statement

Background:

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is the premier research institution in the world and it is there as well as through many of the NIH funded institutions that breakthrough research takes place. Adequate funding of these key government agencies is necessary to ensure the continued advancement in cutting edge biotechnologies, to maintain a pipeline for innovation and to protect the security of the biotechnology industry’s investment in research and development of life-saving therapeutics.

The NIH’s National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) seeks to assure that every individual is born healthy and wanted, that women suffer no adverse consequence from the reproductive process, and that all children have the opportunity to fulfill their potential for a healthy and productive life unhampered by disease or disability. In pursuit of this mission, the NICHD conducts and supports laboratory, clinical, and epidemiological research on the reproductive, neurobiologic, developmental, and behavioral processes that determine and maintain the health of children, adults, families, and populations. NICHD’s work is based on the concept that reproductive processes and the management of fertility is of major concern, not only to the individual, but to society.

The President’s budget plan recommends a 2 percent increase of $549 million to the NIH budget for 2004. This would end the 14 to 15 percent annual increases provided for by the five-year doubling of the agency’s budget. This dramatic decline in the rate of growth for the NIH will threaten the stability of the medical research enterprise.

Working within the congressional budget blueprint, congressional appropriators now must determine the funding levels for these key agencies.

RESOLVE’s Position on NIH Appropriations:

RESOLVE endorses the highest possible allocation of federal dollars and strong, sustained resources for health programs under the jurisdiction of the House and Senate Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittees. These programs are where vital biomedical health research takes place, research that in turn guides community-based prevention and health promotion programs as well as specific treatment protocols which benefit our nation’s patient populations. These programs will not succeed in achieving the goal of improved health outcomes for all Americans without strong, sustained resources and the commitment to those resources by Congress. Basic biomedical research is one of the most important roles for the federal government.

To support the extraordinary work of the National Institutes of Health and NIH’s National Institute for Child Health and Human Development, RESOLVE joins the Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research Funding in supporting: A $30 billion budget for NIH, which represents a 10 percent increase over fiscal year 2003. The increase is vital to maintain the progress of the last five years. Only continued, sustained investment in medical technologies will provide therapies and cures for tomorrow.

RESOLVE joins the Friends of NICHD in supporting:

At least $1.33 billion for NICHD in fiscal year (FY) 2004. An appropriation of $1.33 billion, which represents a 10 percent increase, in FY 2004 will ensure that NICHD is able to continue to identify breakthroughs that are on the brink of discovery and to produce new insights into human development.

RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association, is a national non-profit organization whose mission since 1974 has been to provide timely, compassionate support and information to those touched by infertility. RESOLVE works to increase public awareness of the issues surrounding infertility and the various family building options available to those working to resolve their infertility. RESOLVE’s strength lies in its more than 50 volunteer led chapters which provide education and support to the local communities in virtually every state.