Update: NIH FY 2016 Funding

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

December 16, 2015

Earlier this month, AST members reached out to congress to advocate for FY 2016 NIH research funding levels.

The AST also drafted a letter of support for this funding increase.

Today, we are happy to report that these efforts were successful!

The NIH received $32 billion in the omnibus appropriations bill. This represents a $2 billion increase over last year's funding level - the largest increase the NIH has received in the Labor/HHS bill in more than a decade.

Over the past decade, the NIH purchasing power has decreased by more than 20 percent. This has slowed research and advances toward treatments for thousands of incurable diseases. This renewed dedication to NIH funding will help ensure that we can address our country's health challenges for years to come.

Several of the Key NIH Investments Included in the Omnibus Bill:

  • A $350 Million Increase for Alzheimer’s Disease Research: The bill provides a $350 million increase for Alzheimer’s research at the National Institute on Aging, a 60 percent increase over last year’s level. Every 68 seconds, someone in America develops Alzheimer’s. There are currently more than five million Americans living with the disease and that number is expected to reach 16 million by 2050. Yet for every $261 Medicare and Medicaid spend on caring for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease, the federal government spends only $1 on Alzheimer’s research. Over the past year, cutting-edge NIH-supported research identified a set of 10 compounds in blood that might be used to distinguish the risk for developing memory deficits or Alzheimer’s disease. The bill dedicates funding to help advance those efforts.
  • $5.2 Billion for the National Cancer Institute: The measure includes more than $5 billion for the National Cancer Institute, a five percent increase over last year’s level. Research is underway at NCI to develop therapies that target gene mutations present in 30 percent of cancers. It is one of several key initiatives the Institute is pursuing to advance cancer research and treatment.
  • $200 Million for the New Precision Medicine Initiative: Precision Medicine will allow physicians to individualize treatments based on patients’ unique genetic makeup. Precision Medicine will give a physician the potential to specifically target a cure rather than move forward with a one-size-fits all treatment.
  • $150 Million for the BRAIN Initiative: The bill provides an $85 million increase for the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiative, bringing the total investment to $150 million for the coming year. The BRAIN Initiative will map the human brain to help researchers better understand and treat brain disorders such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, traumatic brain injury (TBI), and depression.
  • $461 Million to Combat Antibiotic Resistance: Antibiotics have been used to successfully treat patients for more than 70 years, but over time the drugs have become less effective, as organisms adapt to the drugs designed to kill them. The bill provides a total of $461 million, a $100 million increase over last year’s level, to expand efforts to develop new antibiotics, create rapid diagnostic tests, and build a national genome sequence database on all reported resistant human infections.
  • $12.6 Million for the Gabriella Miller Kids First Act: The Gabriella Miller Kids First Act, which was signed into law last year, created a dedicated fund for pediatric medical research. The bill provides the resources authorized under the law, and prioritizes funding for pediatric cancer research.