The Trump administration could slash $5.8 billion from the 2018 budget of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), yet still fund as least as much research by eliminating overhead payments to universities and research institutions, Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Tom Price told lawmakers today.
The hearing, before the appropriations subcommittee in the U.S. House of Representatives that oversees the HHS budget, included several questions about the 18% cut to NIH’s $31.7 billion budget that President Donald Trump has proposed. (An addendum to that request also included a proposed cut of $1.2 billion in the current fiscal year.)
Cuts of that size have outraged biomedical research groups and drawn opposition from both Democrats and many Republications in Congress. The chairman of the subcommittee, Representative Tom Cole (R–OK), said today that “this committee, and certainly me personally, will be very hesitant about” the proposed cut to NIH and other parts of HHS.