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Lydia Polimeni/National Institutes of Health

Senate panel proposes $2 billion, 5.4% increase for NIH

A U.S. Senate appropriations subcommittee today approved a spending bill that calls for giving the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland, a $2 billion, 5.4% increase to $39.1 billion in the 2019 fiscal year that begins 1 October.

The bill, which will be voted on by the full Senate appropriations panel later this week, arrives just weeks after a House of Representatives spending panel proposed a $1.25 billion raise. The House and Senate numbers are well above President Donald Trump's $34.2 billion budget request for NIH. The numbers suggest the agency is headed for another strong year in the budget process; Congress has approved hefty increases for NIH in each of the past few years.

The Senate bill calls for increasing NIH's spending on Alzheimer's disease research by $425 million, to $2.34 billion.

According to an appropriations panel fact sheet, the bill also calls for:

  • $500 million for research on opioid addiction, development of opioid alternatives, pain management, and addiction treatment;
  • $429.4 million for the  Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies Initiative to map the human brain, a $29 million increase;
  • $361.8 million for the Institutional Development Award, an $11.2 million increase;
  • $376 million for the All of Us precision medicine study, an $86 million increase;
  • $550 million for the National Strategy to Combat Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria, a $37 million increase;
  • $560 million for the Clinical and Translational Science Award, a $17.32 million increase;
  • $12.6 million for the Gabriella Miller Kids First Research Act;
  • $120 million for research on the universal flu vaccine, a $20 million increase; and
  • increases to every institute and center to continue investments in innovative research to advance fundamental knowledge and speed the development of new therapies, diagnostics, and preventive measures to improve the health of all Americans.