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Research!America says house funding levels for FY13 could undermine medical progress

WASHINGTON, April 25, 2012 Research!America President and CEO Mary Woolley says the House Appropriations Subcommittee's top-line allocation for the Departments of Labor and Health and Human Services is far from what's needed to maintain a thriving research enterprise that saves lives and spurs new businesses and jobs throughout the country.

The allocation is based on an overall funding level that's $19 billion below what was mandated under last year's Budget Control Act. "This is a steep cut that severely challenges the subcommittee as it seeks to provide adequate funding for crucial medical research," Woolley noted.

The allocation is also in sharp contrast to the sentiment of many Americans who believe the nation must accelerate its investment in research and development to outpace other countries that have made research a priority. A recent Research!America poll shows an overwhelming majority of Americans (91%) say it is important for the U.S. to maintain its world leadership role in science and innovation.

"Unfortunately, the extremely low allocation is a clear indication we are moving in the wrong direction and could jeopardize our global competitiveness and ability to advance research that offers hope to patients with disabling and deadly diseases. Research and development must remain a national priority or our country must prepare to relinquish its leadership position in a burgeoning global innovative economy. Last year, the subcommittee demonstrated true leadership in allocating a $1 billion increase for the National Institutes of Health.

We urge House appropriators to carefully weigh the concerns of voters and once again allocate strong funding for the National Institutes of Health and other federal health agencies that protect and improve public health," she added.

Contact: Suzanne Ffolkes

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