One Voice Against Cancer coalition letter
Federal investment in cancer research has played a role in every major innovation in the fight against cancer and has led to a decline in mortality rates for many cancers. The COVID-19 pandemic, however, has negatively impacted cancer research in multiple ways. Many cancer centers were forced to halt enrollment on clinical trials to reduce exposure risk. Philanthropies also are receiving drastically fewer donations and therefore have limited support for research grants. ASTRO, in collaboration with cancer-focused organizations is asking Congress to increase funding for cancer research at the NIH and NCI and provide emergency supplemental funding for projects that were stalled during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Therefore, ASTRO recommends at least $46.111 billion for NIH in FY 2022, a $3.177 billion increase over the comparable FY 2021 funding level, which would allow the NIH’s base budget to keep pace with the biomedical research and development price index (BRDPI) and provide meaningful growth of 5 percent. For NCI, we recommend $7.609 billion, the amount proposed by NCI in its FY 2022 professional judgment budget. Additionally, ASTRO urges Congress to provide the NIH with up to $15.5 billion to respond to the COVID-19 emergency in order to continue to making progress in the fight against cancer.