Washington, D.C.—Today the House Labor Health and Human Services Appropriations Subcommittee on Health will vote on a FY 2021 spending bill that includes a $5.5 billion funding increase for the National Institutes of Health (NIH)—half of which is emergency funding and the remainder of which will be divided among the various Institutes, including a nearly $470 million funding boost for the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The bill also increases funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and allocates an additional $10 million for the CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health (OSH), which provides funding for programs that help prevent youth from starting to use tobacco and helps adult tobacco users to quit.
A statement from the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) follows:
“ACS CAN greatly appreciates the committee’s allocation of much-needed resources to the NIH and CDC during this critical time. The coronavirus pandemic has again made clear the importance of robust medical funding in maintaining and improving our nation’s health.
“We urge the committee to consider the broad range of research needs as it moves forward with the appropriations process. In addition to addressing the COVID crisis we need lawmakers to continue investing in cancer research. The pandemic has stalled clinical trials and restarting those projects along with advancing and funding new ones is necessary to maximize past investments and continue the positive momentum in improved cancer prevention, detection and treatment.
“ACS CAN welcomes increased funding for the CDC, including the Office on Smoking and Health (OSH). Tobacco use remains the number one preventable cause of cancer in our country and OSH serves a critical role in helping prevent kids from starting tobacco use and helping adults to quit.
“Increased CDC funding should also extend to cancer screening and treatment programs. These programs are essential, especially at time when more Americans may find themselves uninsured or underinsured due to pandemic-related layoffs and other economic changes.
“On behalf of the more than 1.8 million Americans who will be diagnosed with cancer this year, we look forward to working with lawmakers to pass a final appropriations bill that reflects the critical need for medical research across a broad range of priorities, including cancer.”