Despite unprecedented advances in biomedical research, Congressional appropriations to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) was insufficient to keep pace with scientific progress. From fiscal year 2004-2015, increases to NIH were in the 1-3% range. A sustained, predictable funding stream was needed to ensure continued scientific achievements.
Policy: Advocate for increased funding for biomedical research conducted through the National Institutes of Health.
Positioning: National Coalition for Cancer Research, a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit affiliation of 23 national cancer organizations, was a lead organization of more than 100 other scientific, consumer, academic and patient organizations to form a working group which joined forces with other scientific, patient and academic entities to advocate for substantial increases in funding to NIH.
Pursuit: Established a collaborative process to ensure maximum communication among participating organizations, including uniform messaging and coordination of efforts. Conducted numerous Congressional briefings, created teams of advocates to conduct meetings with Members of Congress and Congressional committees. Engaged grassroots campaigns for scientists and patient advocates throughout the country to contact their Members to support additional funding for NIH. Media campaign through earned media and op-ed articles in major publications. Conducted presentations at scientific and patient advocacy conferences. Organized site visits by Members of Congress at research centers.
Achieved a $3 billion increase (8.9%) in funding for the National Institutes of Health in fiscal year 2018, to $37 billion, the largest increase in 16 years. Coordinated the creation of a nonpartisan, bicameral working group of Members of Congress to advocate for continued, sustained annual increases for NIH appropriations in the future.