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CCTS Newsletter | January 18, 2019

Thursday, January 24, 2019   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Andres Bachelet
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Dale Dirks and Dane Christiansen

January 18th, 2018

 

The 116th Congress is only a couple weeks old, but the partial government shutdown stretches back into last year. While federal medical research and public health programs are not directly impacted (the FY 2019 appropriations bills for HHS, DoD, and VA were completed), the disruption is resonating across the government. The Food and Drug Administration is operating with only “essential” staff, which is limiting food safety and drug development/oversight activities. Further, the Government Printing Office is closed, which is preventing the official publication of Federal Register notices announcing proposed health policy rules and the announcement of advisory council and similar committee meetings. In aggregate, the shutdown is causing compounding commotion across the public service as it drags on as well as a palpable tension stemming from the uncertainty moving forward. Stakeholder organizations have begun highlighting emerging challenges while calling on both congressional leaders and the administration to end the shutdown.

 

Since the current shutdown affects only certain parts of the government, Congress is open and moving forward with its legislative agenda. The annual appropriations process traditionally starts in early February with the ceremonial release of the President’s Budget Request to Congress. The shutdown will likely mean that the administration’s budget is delayed. However, both the House and Senate plan to keep FY 2020 budget and appropriations activities on schedule. It remains critically important for the community to advocate for meaningful funding increases for clinical and translational research as well as training and career development opportunities. The current complications to the spending bills and government operations in general make this annual advocacy particular crucial.

 

To visit Capitol Hill and advocate with your colleagues on behalf of the full spectrum of medical research and particular programs, please sign up for the community’s Hill Day during TS 2019 [include registration info]