House Democratic Report on Impact of Sequestration: NIH Budget Lowest Since FY2007 in Actual Dollars, Lowest Since FY2000 when Adjusted for Inflation

House Democratic Report on Impact Of Sequestration: NIH Budget Lowest Since FY2007 in Actual Dollars, Lowest Since FY2000 When
Adjusted for Inflation

Legislative Update
May 15, 2013

Today, the House Appropriations Committee Democrats, led by Ranking Member Nita Lowey (D-NY), released a report on the impact of sequestration in Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 and efforts to mitigate its impacts. The report includes examples of sequestration on the National Institute of Health’s (NIH) budget, research projects, and jobs. The report states that sequestration’s reduction to the NIH budget in FY2013 results in the lowest level of funding since FY2007 in actual dollar terms, and the lowest level since FY2000 when adjusted for inflation. Other findings include:

  • NIH estimates that its budget will support 1,357 fewer research project grants (RPGs) in FY2013 than FY2012, and that the FY2013 grant total would be the lowest since FY2001.
  • Within the total above, the number of competing grants (new grants or existing grants up for re-competition) is expected to decrease by 703, or 7.8 percent, to the lowest level since FY1998.
  • NIH estimates that support for research centers will be reduced by 9.6 percent in FY2013 compared to FY2012.
  • The number of research training positions supported is expected to decrease by 468, to the lowest total since FY2000.

The report continues, “The end result of these reductions will be less progress toward understanding basic mechanisms of living organisms and diseases, and toward developing better drugs, vaccines, diagnostics, and procedures.”

In closing, the report says “Congress has already enacted $2.5 trillion in deficit reduction measures since 2010. It must now find consensus on a plan that reduces the debt burden without harming the fragile economic recovery, slowing economic growth, and inhibiting job creation.”

As the report was being released, the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education (LHHS) Appropriations Subcommittee was holding a hearing with NIH Director Francis Collins, M.D., Ph.D. and several Institute and Center Directors. Dr. Collins cited several of the statistics presented above.