Harvard, STATnews hold forum on “21sth Century Cures Act” #research #FDA #NIH


NIH, Bethesda, Maryland

The Harvard Gazette, the school’s in-house newsletter, has a summary of the forum. A video will be available here at some point or find it on Facebook Live.

Note that NEJM editor Jeffrey Drazen said “The NIH is undergoing a slow strangulation,…Money is what drives research. You need the resources when you have an idea.”

Lots of people say this.If you argue that more money for research is always good, you agree. And if you are one of the many, many scientists trying to get the NIH money to fund a project, life is a lot harder. But, is there such a thing as evidence-based research funding? Are we getting outr money’s worth?

Note that NIH’s budget doubled between 1999 and 2003.  Funding started to decline with the 2008 financial crisis, and it’s been pretty level since then. That’s the equivalent of a decline with inflation.

Still,  to many, more is better and level is less. So the increased funding for NIH in the bill perhaps sweetened the provisions in the “21st Century Care Act”  that will speed FDA approval of new drugs. That’s good news for those who will get better and richer from new drugs. Bad news for those worried that FDA oversight is already lax. Two of the speakers expressed some “concern about speeding up the FDA’s drug approval process, saying that will result in decisions based on less-rigorous science.”




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s