The American College of Radiology (ACR) has submitted testimony with the House Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies (LHHS) Appropriations Subcommittee supporting increased funding in FY 2018 for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The subcommittee held a hearing March 8 to collect input from public stakeholders and NIH advocacy groups.
The ACR’s testimony supported the recommendation of the Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research — a coalition of more than 300 patient and voluntary health groups, medical and scientific societies, academic and research organizations, and industry. It asks Congress to increase the NIH budget by at least $2 billion above its FY 2017 funding level, in addition to funds in the 21st Century Cures Act for targeted initiatives.
Testimony highlighted the important contributions of the National Cancer Institute and the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging Bioengineering (NIBIB) have made in the advancement of medical imaging and their importance to NIH’s value and success.
Subsequent to the LHHS Appropriations Subcommittee deliberations, the White House released the “President’s Budget Blueprint” on March 16 outlining administration priorities for FY 2018. Among the requested $54 billion in reductions to non-defense programs, the Budget Blueprint calls for a $5.8 billion reduction for NIH, representing a decrease for the agency of approximately 19 percent. However, as always, Congress ultimately controls federal spending via the appropriations process.
The ACR will submit similar testimony with the Senate LHHS Appropriations Subcommittee to reiterate its support for increased NIH funding in the next federal fiscal year.