SHORT HILLS, N.J., PRNewswire/ — The Christopher Reeve Foundation (CRF), a national, non-profit organization dedicated to funding research for cures and treatments for spinal cord injuries and providing resources for people living with disabilities, today announced its opposition to the Administration’s request of a hard funding freeze for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) budget for FY 2007.
“Lack of adequate NIH funding is particularly dangerous in a relatively small field like spinal cord injury,” said Kathy Lewis, President and CEO of the Christopher Reeve Foundation. “For our field to continue to grow and push therapies to the patient, NIH funding is critical. Our scientists are telling us the situation is desperate. How do you tell someone recently paralyzed that the science is there but the funding is not?”
The NIH today released an updated projection http://ospa.od.nih.gov/ of inflation in the biomedical research sector of the U.S. economy, further dramatizing the decline in the amount of medical science supported by the federal government. On the heels of the first cut to NIH funding since 1970, the President has proposed level- funding this agency in FY07. The requested total of $28.3 billion is $62 million less than in FY05. As a result, the total number of NIH-funded research project grants would drop by 642, or 2 percent, below last year’s level.
“Christopher Reeve was passionate about increasing the budget of the NIH,” remarked Michael Manganiello, CRF’s Senior Vice President for Government Relations. “In part because of his leadership, the NIH budget grew from 12 billion dollars in 1998 to nearly 27.2 billion dollars in fiscal 2003. With inflation and four years of marginal increases or cuts in biomedical research, the hope he worked so hard to achieve on behalf of the four million people living with paralysis has now been diminished.”
The NIH is the most efficient and effective funder of scientific research in the world. CRF urges Congress to adequately fund medical research through the NIH when it drafts its budget in the coming months.
About CRF The Christopher Reeve Foundation is dedicated to finding treatments and cures for spinal cord injury by funding innovative research, and improving the lives of people living with paralysis through grants, information and advocacy. For more information, please visit http://www.christopherreeve.org/site/c.ddJFKRNoFiG/b.4048063/k.C5D5/Christopher_Reeve_Spinal_Cord_Injury_and_Paralysis_Foundation.htm or call 800-225-0292.
SOURCE The Christopher Reeve FoundationWeb Site: http://www.christopherreeve.org/site/c.ddJFKRNoFiG/b.4048063/k.C5D5/Christopher_Reeve_Spinal_Cord_Injury_and_Paralysis_Foundation.htm