Medical Research Funding: Kidney Cancer Research & NIH gets Boost in Funding by “Mini-bus” Passed by Senate
On September 18, the Senate passed the FY19 spending package that covers Defense, Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Departments as well as a continuing resolution for the remaining programs until December 7 to avert any partial shutdown. The appropriations package was carried by a vote of 93 – 7, with the dissenting votes coming from Sens. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Mike Lee (R-UT), Rand Paul (R-KY), David Perdue (R-GA), Ben Sasse (R-NE), Pat Toomey (R-PA), and Bernie Sanders (I-VT). The House is slated to vote on the measure next week (before the end of the fiscal year on September 30). The Labor-HHS-Education division of the bill provides $178.1 billion in discretionary funding for the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education and Related Agencies to continue investments in critical medical research, opioid abuse prevention and treatment, and education. The bill includes $39.1 billion for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), an increase of $2 billion over current funding, and $3.8 billion to combat the opioid crisis, an increase of $206 million over current funding. The bill also includes an increase to $20 million for the KCRP (Kidney Cancer Research Program) pursuant to the CDMRP (Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program). This increase came about through the combined efforts of a number of advocacy groups coordinated under the leadership of KCAN.