The Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) applauds the President’s Fiscal Year 2015 (FY15) budget request to more than double funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to combat antibiotic resistance, to continue funding for the important Advanced Molecular Detection (AMD) initiative to track the development of antibiotic resistance in the U.S., and to fund the Global Health Security (GHS) initiative to detect, prevent, and control antimicrobial resistance around the world. On behalf of the millions of patients who suffer from resistant infections, IDSA has long called for increased federal leadership to address this public health crisis. This budget request is an important step forward, and we urge Congress to fully fund it.
The complex problem of antibiotic resistance requires substantial multi-faceted action that includes improved surveillance and data collection, stewardship, and incentives to spur the development of new antibiotics and diagnostics. While we strongly support new CDC funding to address each of these key areas, we also call upon the White House and other agencies to play an active role in combating antibiotic resistance. In addition, we urge the President to work closely with Congress to enact critical legislation, including (1) the Antibiotic Development to Advance Patient Treatment Act to speed patient access to the most desperately needed antibiotics; (2) tax credits to spur antibiotic and diagnostic research and development; and (3) the Strategies to Address Antimicrobial Resistance (STAAR) Act to further strengthen the federal response to resistance.
In addition to antibiotic resistance, IDSA is concerned with a host of infectious diseases threats. We remain deeply troubled by the recent years of deep budget cuts and their devastating impact on our nation’s biomedical research enterprise and public health infrastructure. Despite the increase in FY 2014 omnibus appropriations bill, CDC’s budget authority is similar to what it was in FY 2002. Adjusted for inflation, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) budget dropped by approximately 15 percent between FY 2004 and FY 2014. The modest funding increase proposed for NIH for FY15, while welcome, is not nearly enough to reverse the damage of years of inadequate funding. We urge the President and Congress to reverse these cuts and make significant investments in these national priorities.
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