Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research Letter to President-elect Joe Biden

December 4, 2020

The Honorable Joseph R. Biden, Jr.
1401 Constitution Ave. NW Washington, DC 20230

Dear President-elect Biden:

The Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research, and the 349 undersigned member organizations representing patients, clinicians, scientists, educators, academic institutions, research organizations, and industry, thank you for your steadfast support for science. As the oldest coalition advocating for the federal investment in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and biomedical, bioengineering, behavioral, and social science research, we are grateful that you support increased and sustainable funding growth for the NIH as part of $300 billion in new research and development investments in your Build Back Better plan.

We applaud the steps you and your team have already taken to seek and then follow recommendations from the scientific community during the deadly COVID-19 pandemic, and we appreciate your recognition that investments in scientific discovery are crucial to improving the nation’s health and economy in both the near- and long-term. In the months and years ahead, we urge attention to:
• Foundational principles that promote both a thriving scientific enterprise and public trust in science;
• Emergency supplemental funding to allow the NIH to continue to make progress against COVID-19 and to resume pre-pandemic research; and
• Sustained, robust growth for the NIH’s base budget across scientific disciplines and disease areas.

Foundational Principles. As we turn to a new year, we urge your Administration to keep these foundational principles in mind:
• To improve health for all, supporting medical research must be a top national priority. Beyond robust funding, this includes appointing distinguished scientists to key science advisory and science agency leadership positions as soon as possible, ensuring they have access to the President, as well as the trust of the scientific community.
• Public policies must be evidence-based and guided by sound and transparent scientific discoveries. By ensuring clear communication, we can increase public trust in science.
• Diversity, equity, and inclusion are essential to the advancement of the best science and to solving the myriad health and societal challenges we face today, including tackling the health disparities laid bare by the COVID-19 pandemic.
• Support for a strong research workforce pipeline is essential to ensure the U.S. is able to recruit and retain talented scientists into productive careers in medical research.
• Policies should facilitate a societal culture in which science can thrive and global, multi-sector collaboration is possible.

Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research, p.2

Emergency Supplemental Funding. As you know, the NIH plays an instrumental role in funding basic, translational, and clinical research in labs nationwide and facilitating the translation of this knowledge into applications for human health. For example, NIH-funded research has been critical to confronting the COVID-19 pandemic, among the most pressing public health crises of our time. Since the beginning of the pandemic, many NIH-funded researchers have focused on developing diagnostics, treatments, and vaccines for COVID-19. The incredible pace of scientific advancements over the past eleven months ̶ from the rapid sequencing of the viral genome, to the development of new assays to test for infection, to preclinical and clinical testing of potential vaccine candidates and treatments ̶ has been possible because of decades of NIH-funded basic research. As the world’s largest funder of biomedical research, the NIH has invested billions of dollars in developing the technologies, collaborative research networks, and a workforce that enabled this accelerated pace of biomedical innovation in the face of the COVID-19 emergency. As the fight against COVID-19 continues apace, we urge continued supplemental investments in the NIH to sustain this work and to ensure that efforts to combat the pandemic do not displace other essential avenues of discovery.

Strong Commitment Across Disciplines and Disease Areas. Robust, sustained, and predictable funding growth for the NIH base budget is also essential to ensuring that the U.S. is able to meet the scientific challenges beyond the COVID-19 pandemic and that our nation’s research institutions are able to rebuild in the face of devastating impacts to the biomedical research workforce. Continued investment in the broad array of biomedical research will be critical to furthering advances against the myriad diseases and conditions facing humankind, ranging from cancer to heart disease to stroke to diabetes to Alzheimer’s disease. A robust investment in medical research as a part of support for the broader public health continuum is crucial to improving the health of all.

Historically, and especially over the last five years, Democrats and Republicans have joined forces to prioritize funding the NIH, helping the agency regain some of the ground that it lost after years of effectively flat budgets. This most welcome renewed investment in the NIH has accelerated discovery toward promising therapies and diagnostics, reenergized existing and aspiring scientists nationwide, restored hope for patients and their families, and facilitated critical basic and applied research aimed at ending the COVID-19 pandemic and other threats. Support for the NIH also yields important benefits for local economies. In fiscal year (FY) 2019, NIH-funded research supported more than 476,000 jobs across the U.S. and generated more than $81 billion in new economic activity.

To further realize the potential of medical research, our nation must continue this forward momentum with sustained, robust budget growth. As you consider your administration’s budget priorities for FY 2022 and beyond, the Ad Hoc Group recommends an ongoing commitment to meaningful growth above the cost of biomedical research inflation for the NIH. The stability associated with a budget trajectory that not only keeps pace with inflation but also allows investment in new research is essential to ensure we continue to push the boundaries of discovery toward meaningful outcomes for patients.

We are grateful for your outspoken support over many years for biomedical research and your leadership in making these funding and foundational commitments a reality. We offer the Ad Hoc Group and our community as a resource as you determine priorities and formulate budget requests as President. We look forward to working with you and your team toward our mutual goal of improved health.


Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research, p.3

349 Signatories as of December 3, 2020

Academic Pediatric Association
Academy of Radiology & Biomedical Imaging Research
Albert Einstein College of Medicine
Alliance for Academic Internal Medicine
Alliance for Aging Research
Alpha-1 Foundation
Alzheimer’s Association
Alzheimer’s Foundation of America
Alzheimer’s Impact Movement
Alzheimer’s Los Angeles
Alzheimer’s Orange County
American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry
American Academy of Developmental Medicine and Dentistry
American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine
American Academy of Neurology
American Academy of Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery
American Academy of Pediatrics
American Academy of Sleep Medicine
American Association for Anatomy
American Association for Cancer Research
American Association for Dental Research
American Association for the Advancement of Science
American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases
American Association for Women in Radiology
American Association of Chairs of Departments of Psychiatry
American Association of Colleges of Nursing
American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine
American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy
American Association of Immunologists
American Association of Neurological Surgeons
American Association of Physicists in Medicine
American Association on Health and Disability
American Brain Coalition
American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network
American College of Academic Addiction Medicine
American College of Cardiology
American College of Clinical Pharmacology
American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
American College of Radiology
American College of Rheumatology
American Council on Education
American Gastroenterological Association
American Headache Society
American Heart Association
American Institute for Cancer Research
American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering
American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine
American Liver Foundation
American Lung Association
Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research, p.4
American Massage Therapy Association
American Network of Community Options and Resources
American Neurological Association
American Pediatric Society
American Physiological Society
American Psychological Association
American Roentgen Ray Society
American Society for Investigative Pathology
American Society for Matrix Biology
American Society for Microbiology
American Society for Nutrition
American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
American Society for Radiation Oncology
American Society for Reproductive Medicine
American Society for Transplantation and Cellular Therapy
American Society for Virology
American Society of Clinical Psychopharmacology
American Society of Emergency Radiologists
American Society of Hematology
American Society of Human Genetics
American Society of Nephrology
American Society of Pediatric Nephrology
American Society of Radiologic Technologists
American Society of Transplantation
American Thoracic Society
American Urogynecologic Society
Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago
Anxiety and Depression Association of America
Associated Medical Schools of New York
Association for Clinical and Translational Science
Association for Clinical Oncology
Association for Prevention Teaching and Research
Association for Psychological Science
Association for Research in Otolaryngology
Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology
Association of Academic Health Centers
Association of Academic Health Sciences Libraries
Association of Academic Physiatrists
Association of American Cancer Institutes
Association of American Medical Colleges
Association of American Universities
Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges
Association of Anatomy, Cell Biology and Neurobiology Chairs
Association of Independent Research Institutes
Association of Medical School Pediatric Department Chairs
Association of Pathology Chairs
Association of Population Centers
Association of Psychologists in Academic Health Centers
Association of Public & Land-grant Universities
Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry
Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health
Association of University Anesthesiologists
Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research, p.5
Association of University Professors of Neurology
Association of University Professors of Ophthalmology
Association of University Radiologists
Atrium Health
Autism Speaks
Axis Advocacy
Baylor College of Medicine
Biophysical Society
BJC HealthCare
Boston University
Bridge the Gap – SYNGAP1 Education and Research Foundation
CADASIL Together We Have Hope
Caregiver Action Network
CaringKind, The Heart of Alzheimer’s Caregiving
Carle Illinois College of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine
Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta
Children’s Hospital Los Angeles
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center
Coalition for Clinical and Translational Science
Coalition for the Life Sciences
Columbia University
Conference of Boston Teaching Hospitals
Congress of Neurological Surgeons
Consortium of Social Science Associations
Cooley’s Anemia Foundation
Coriell Institute for Medical Research
Cornell University
Council of Graduate Schools
Creighton University School of Medicine
Cribs for Kids
Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation
Cure Alzheimer’s Fund
Cystic Fibrosis Foundation
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute
Dartmouth-Hitchcock Health
Deadliest Cancers Coalition
Dementia Society of America
Digestive Disease National Coalition
Down with Dystonia
Dravet Syndrome Foundation
Duke Health
Duke University
Dup15q Alliance
Dystonia Advocacy Network
Dystonia Medical Research Foundation
East Carolina University
Emory University
Endocrine Society
Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research, p.6
Epilepsy Foundation
Esophageal Cancer Action Network
EveryLife Foundation for Rare Diseases
Eye Bank Association of America
EyeSight Foundation of Alabama
Family Caregiver Alliance
Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology
Federation of Associations in Behavioral and Brain Sciences
Florida State University
FND Hope International
Fox Chase Cancer Center
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Friends of NCBDDD
Friends of the National Institute on Aging
GBS|CIDP Foundation International
Global Health Technologies Coalition
Global Liver Institute
GO2 Foundation for Lung Cancer
Harvard Medical School
Harvard University
Hennepin Healthcare Research Institute
Hennepin Healthcare System
Hepatitis B Foundation
HIV Medicine Association
Hope For Stomach Cancer
Houston Methodist
Huntington’s Disease Society of America
Indiana University
Infectious Diseases Society of America
International Association of Medical Science Educators
International Cystitis Foundation
International Retinal Research Foundation
International Rett Syndrome Foundation
International Society for Magnetic Resonance in Medicine
International Society for Stem Cell Research
Interstitial Cystitis Association
Jeffrey Modell Foundation
John & Amy Mewhiney Cancer Foundation
Johns Hopkins University
Konica Minolta Healthcare
Leaders Engaged on Alzheimer’s Disease Coalition
Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome Foundation
Lewy Body Dementia Association
Louisiana State University
Louisiana State University Health Science Center-New Orleans
Lupus Foundation of America
Lymphatic Education & Research Network
March of Dimes
Mass General Brigham
Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research, p.7
Mayo Clinic
Medical College of Wisconsin
Medical Image Perception Society
Medical Library Association
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation
Michigan State University
Moffitt Cancer Center
National Alliance for Eye and Vision Research
National Alliance on Mental Illness
National Alopecia Areata Foundation
National Association of State Head Injury Administrators
National Ataxia Foundation
National Coalition for Heart and Stroke Research
National Hemophilia Foundation
National Kidney Foundation
National Multiple Sclerosis Society
National Pancreas Foundation
National Task Group on Intellectual Disabilities and Dementia Practices
NephCure Kidney International
New York Medical College
New York State Academic Dental Centers
NorCal CarciNET Community
North American Society of Cardiovascular Imaging
North American Vascular Biology Organization
Northeastern University
Nutrition and Medical Foods Coalition
NYU Langone Health
Pancreatic Cancer Action Network
PATH Decision Support Software
Patient Services
Patrick Risha CTE Awareness Foundation
Pediatric Policy Council
Personalized Medicine Coalition
Phelan-McDermid Syndrome Foundation
PKD Foundation
Ponce Health Sciences University School of Medicine
Population Association of America
Project Sleep
Prostate Cancer Foundation
Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation
Pulmonary Hypertension Association
Radiological Society of North America
Research to Prevent Blindness
Restless Legs Syndrome Foundation
Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Saint Louis University
Scleroderma Foundation
Siemens Healthineers
Sjogren’s Foundation
Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research, p.8
Sleep Research Society
Society for Academic Emergency Medicine
Society for Advanced Body Imaging
Society for Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance
Society for Imaging Informatics in Medicine
Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine
Society for Neuroscience
Society for Pediatric Research
Society for Reproductive Investigation
Society for Women’s Health Research
Society of Abdominal Radiology
Society of Academic Associations of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine
Society of Breast Imaging
Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography
Society of Chairs of Academic Radiology Departments
Society of General Internal Medicine
Society of Gynecologic Oncology
Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging
Society of Radiologists in Ultrasound
Society of Skeletal Radiology
Society of Thoracic Radiology
Southern Illinois University School of Medicine
Special Care Dentistry Association
Stanford University
Stony Brook University
Susan G. Komen
Temple University
Temple University Health System
The Biomedical Engineering Society
The Brain Donor Project
The George Washington University
The Gerontological Society of America
The Histochemical Society
The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research
The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center
The Society for Pediatric Radiology
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
The University of Toledo
Treatment Communities of America
Tuberous Sclerosis Alliance
Tulane University
Tulane University School of Medicine
United for Charitable Assistance
United for Medical Research
United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation
University of California Los Angeles
University of California San Diego
University of California San Francisco
University of California System
University of Central Florida
University of Chicago Medicine
University of Cincinnati
Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research, p.9
University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus
University of Colorado Boulder
University of Connecticut
University of Florida
University of Hawaii – John A. Burns School of Medicine
University of Illinois College of Medicine
University of Iowa Health Care
University of Maryland, Baltimore
University of Massachusetts Medical School
University of Miami Miller School of Medicine
University of Michigan
University of Minnesota Medical School
University of New Mexico
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine
University of North Dakota School of Medicine & Health Sciences
University of Pennsylvania
University of Pittsburgh
University of Rhode Island College of Health Sciences
University of Rochester
University of Southern California
University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
University of Utah
University of Virginia School of Medicine
University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health
US Hereditary Angioedema Foundation
USF Health Morsani College of Medicine
Valleywise Health
Vanderbilt University
Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Virginia Commonwealth University and VCU Health System
Wake Forest Clinical and Translational Science Institute
Wake Forest School of Medicine
Washington State University
Washington University in St. Louis
West Virginia University
World Molecular Imaging Society
Yale University