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Monthly Briefing

Monthly Briefing

May 2017 Monthly Briefing

The Bottom Line

  • Congress reached agreement on the final FY 2017 appropriations bills on May 1
  • ASPPH funding priorities were funded at either the same level as in fiscal year 2016, or with a slight increase
  • NIH received a $2 billion increase
  • President Trump is expected to release his detailed FY 2018 budget proposal on May 22

What's New

Congress Reaches a Final Fiscal Year 2017 Appropriations Agreement

The final Fiscal Year 2017 omnibus bill and statements of conferees were released on May 1. All of the Association’s priorities were funded at either the same level as in fiscal year 2016 or with a slight increase. President Trump said he will sign the bill, even though it rejects all his proposed domestic budget cuts.

National Institutes of Health

The bill provides a total of $34.084 billion for the NIH, $2 billion (+6.2%) above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level. This amount includes $352 million from the 21st Century Cures Act. The Fogarty International Center received an appropriation of $72.213 million, an increase of $1.8 million.

The conferees said they expect NIH “to support a consistent NIH-wide inflationary policy across all ICs [Institutes and Centers] that is no less that the general increase provided to all ICs (3.0 percent) for non-competing grants.” They also said they supported “actions to significantly reduce the average age of NIH-supported new investigators.” NIH on Tuesday is expected to announce limitations on the number and/or amount of awards to investigators in an effort to restructure the grant funding pool.

Centers for Disease Control

The agreement includes a total of program level of $7.3 billion for the CDC – $22 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level. Within the CDC account, the agreement includes:

The provision regarding gun violence research is unchanged.

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

AHRQ received an appropriation of $324 million, a reduction of $10 million from the FY 2016 level (and $40 million below the Obama Administration’s request).

Health Resources and Services Administration

HRSA received an appropriation of $6.461 billion, an increase of $77 million. It appears the Public Health Training Centers (PHTC) Program was level funded. The bill provides $17 million for the “Public Health and Preventive Medicine” line, which funds the PHTC program and other activities. That amount is $4 million below the FY 2016 level. The Obama Administration had proposed a $4 million reduction to reflect “the consolidation of the Integrated Medicine program with the Preventive Medicine Residency program.”

Other Accounts of Interest

Opioid Funding: Congress allocated more than $1 billion in the fiscal 2017 omnibus to fight the opioid addiction crisis. The funds span three appropriations bills in the omnibus. The Labor-HHS-Education title would receive $801 million; Commerce-Justice-Science would receive $276.5 million; and Military Construction-VA, the only one of the 12 appropriations bills that has been enacted, would receive an additional $50 million to help address the problem in the veteran population. Most of the $801 million in this HHS title would go to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration for response activities, including $500 million that was authorized in the so-called “Cures” legislation in 2016 for a new “State Response to Opioid Abuse” program. The bill also includes a $50 million increase in prescription drug overdose and heroin abuse programs at the CDC to bring the total funding to $126 million.

Pell Grants: The bill includes an expansion of Pell grant eligibility to include low-income students attending classes all year. Democratic leaders said that the provision restoring year-round Pell grants would provide one million students with an additional average Pell grant award of $1,650.

Environmental Protection Agency: The bill funds the EPA at $8.06 billion, a reduction of $81.4 million below the fiscal year 2016 enacted level. Within this total, the EPA’s research and regulatory programs are reduced by $52 million. The legislation holds the EPA staff to the current level of 15,000 positions

Previous Month's Briefings

March 2017 Monthly Briefing

ASPPH has engaged the Trump Administration related to the Federal hiring freeze and the January 31 executive order on refugees and immigrants. The Association is also preparing for the upcoming legislative fights on health insurance and the fiscal year 2017 and 2018 appropriations bills.

Read more

January 2017 Monthly Briefing

Many of the ASPPH’s 2016 legislative and policy initiatives will inform the Association’s 2017 advocacy efforts. Among the highlights of 2016 include the development of a white paper distributed to presidential candidates that focuses on the Association’s policy priorities, efforts to enhance the role of prevention research in the Cancer Moonshot initiative, and efforts to promote population health. The Association’s advocacy activities related to Federal appropriations continues to be a top priority as well.

Read more

November 2016 Monthly Briefing

Since October 1, the Federal Government has been operating under a continuing resolution that expires on December 9. Congress is expected to convene in a lame duck session after the election to finalize the fiscal year 2017 appropriations bills. ASPPH has provided the presidential candidates with a new white paper outlining the Association’s policy priorities. The Cancer Moonshot initiative has delivered their final reports.

Read more
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