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Population Association of America

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Mr. Chairman and distinguished members of the subcommittee, it is an honor and a privilege to appear before you today to present the National Institutes of Health (NIH) budget request for Fiscal Year 2007 and discuss the priorities of NIH for this year and beyond.

The request for NIH is $28.4 billion in FY 2007, the same as the FY 2006 level for the Agency. The budget request will support the research programs managed by NIH’s Institutes and Centers. At this budget level, NIH will increase the biodefense research program by $110 million for Advanced Development. Support for the Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Plan will increase by $17 million. We have also chosen to carefully invest in several trans-NIH strategic initiatives. The NIH Roadmap, an incubator for new ideas and initiatives that will accelerate the pace of discovery, increases by $113 million. We allocated $40 million to the Institutes and Centers to launch the Genes, Environment and Health Initiative to accelerate discovery of the major genetic and environmental factors for diseases that have a substantial public health impact. We have also directed $15 million to the new “Pathway to Independence” program to increase our support of new investigators.

I will focus my testimony on the return of the investment in NIH for the American people. In particular, I will discuss how discoveries fueled by this investment are transforming the practice of medicine. We can now clearly envision an era when the treatment paradigm of medicine will increasingly become more predictive, personalized and preemptive. We will strike disease before it strikes us with the hope of greatly reducing overall costs to society. We expect to move away from the costly and predominantly curative model of today, which requires us to wait for the disease to occur before intervening. I will share with you the strategic vision of NIH and discuss the many management innovations we have implemented to ensure optimal stewardship of taxpayers’ resources.

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