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FASEB Washington Update - August 6, 2011

Senate Committee Provides Inflationary Increase for NIH
On July 27th, the Senate Labor, Health and Human Services (LHHS) Subcommittee adopted its fiscal year (FY) 2011 bill (S 3686) by voice vote. Consideration of the measure that funds the National Institutes of Health (NIH) was brief with only Senators Tom Harkin (IA), Thad Cochran (MS), Mary Landrieu (LA), Jack Reed (RI), and Arlen Specter (PA) participating in the discussion. The bill provided $32 billion for NIH, the same recommendations made by the House and approximately $1 billion (3.5 percent) more than the FY 2010 level, and also included $50 million to implement the Cures Acceleration Network (CAN). More Details >

Inside (The Beltway) Scoop – Jennifer Zeitzer
Although members of the House left Washington at the end of July for what was supposed to be a month-long summer break, their vacation is scheduled to be briefly interrupted next week as a result of this week’s activity in the Senate. On Wednesday afternoon, the Senate voted to end debate on a bill that would provide states with additional funding to prevent teacher layoffs and continue Medicaid benefits, clearing the way for a final vote that took place on August 5th. More Details >

FASEB Releases New Breakthroughs in Bioscience Article on Angiogenesis

FASEB has released the latest article in the Breakthroughs in Bioscience series, “Life Blood: Angiogenesis in Health and Disease.” The article describes the critical importance of angiogenesis in human health and disease and highlights the exciting clinical breakthroughs that have grown out of this body of research. More Details >

FASEB Calls for Exclusion of Scientific Societies from Proposed Conflict of Interest Regulations

On August 4, 2010, FASEB submitted comments in response to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Notice of Proposed Rule Making on financial conflicts of interest. The response letter articulates FASEB’s support of efforts to maintain public trust and ensure scientific integrity, but calls on HHS to 1) exclude “reasonable and customary reimbursements” from the definition of significant financial interests, and 2) exclude income from “non-profit, member-based professional scientific or engineering societies” from the reporting requirements. More Details >

NIFA Director Meets With Stakeholders To Seek Input And Address Concerns
National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Director, Dr. Roger Beachy, addressed concerns of the agricultural research community and asked for additional input at a stakeholder meeting on July 29th. During the meeting, Dr. Beachy stated he hoped to reach a broad audience beyond the scientific societies that participated in previous NIFA listening sessions. More Details >

House Holds Hearing on Status of Open Access
On July 29, 2010, the Information Policy, Census, and National Archives Subcommittee of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee convened a hearing entitled “Public Access to Federally-Funded Research.” Subcommittee Chairman William Lacy Clay explained that the purpose of the hearing was to examine the current level of accessibility to federally-funded research and discuss increasing access. More Details >

HHS and CDC Solicit Input on Select Agents and Toxins List
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) are undertaking their biennial review and republication of the HHS list of select agents and toxins. An Advance Notice of Proposed Rule Making (ANPRM) was published in the July 21st Federal Register seeking comments on the revision. HHS and CDC are interested in input on the content of the list (i.e., should agents be added or removed), whether the list should be tiered or stratified based on the risk posed by the agents, the criteria that should be used to designate high-risk and low risk agents, and the security measures that should be in place for those agents, among other issues. Stratification of the list was recommended by the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity and the National Research Council. More Details >

HHS Proposes Modifications to HIPAA Research Provisions

On July 14th, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) on “Modifications to the HIPAA Privacy, Security, and Enforcement Rules Under the Health Information and Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HI-TECH) Act.” The Notice proposes modifications to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) in order to: implement recent statutory amendments enacted through the HI-TECH act, strengthen the privacy and security of protected health information (PHI), and improve the workability and effectiveness of HIPAA. More Details >

FASEB’s Washington Update is brought to you bi-monthly by the FASEB Office of Public Affairs. We welcome your questions and comments – please contact Jennifer Zeitzer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 301-634-7650. For more information about how to get involved in research advocacy, visit: http://capwiz.com/faseb/home/