The official ACTS newsletter that reports on issues of importance to members, including news about membership, advocacy updates and grant opportunities.
Lawmakers continued working into the August recess to pass a package of environmental, tax, and healthcare budget provisions known as the Inflation Reduction Act. The legislation includes a number of items of interest to patient and professional healthcare advocates, including a three-year extension of enhanced ACA (exchange) premium subsidies and a $2,000 out of pocket cap with a smoothing mechanism for Medicare Part D that will take effect 2025. When Congress returns in September, lawmakers will need to pass a Continuing Resolution to keep the government operating along with a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) user-fee package to keep the FDA operating before the October 1st start of the Fiscal Year. Congress is scheduled to be out during October and through the November elections before returning for a Lame Duck session to (hopefully) finalize the Fiscal Year 2023 spending bills and any critical legislation before the end of the year.
As the Biden-Harris Administration was celebrating the enactment of the Inflation Reduction Act, the country learned that NIAID Director Anthony Fauci plans to step down from his role as the nation’s top infectious disease specialist at the end of the year. The announcement caps off fifty years in medical research and public service for Dr. Facui and marks a new phase for NIAID and the ongoing COVID-19 response. Dr. Fauci’s announcement comes at a time when both NIH and NCATS are awaiting new Directors as well (the NIH positions requires Senate confirmation while the leadership for the individual institutes does not).
The House and Senate have released their FY 2023 appropriations bills and both chambers are calling for meaningful funding increases for medical research programs (including CTSAs, CAN, IDeA, and RCMI). CCTS will be working throughout the fall to advocate with key congressional offices on Capitol Hill in an effort to secure the largest possible annual increases for community priorities.