A major congressional effort to spur medical innovation passed a milestone recently when a House of Representatives committee signed off on the 21st Century Cures Act.
The bill revamps policies and provides new funding for the National Institutes of Health and the Food and Drug Administration.
The measure authorizes annual $1.5 billion raises to NIH’s budget for 3 years and also provides $10 billion over 5 years in mandatory funding for a new NIH Innovation Fund. Annually, at least $500 million of the fund will support the new Accelerating Advancement Program, which would provide matching funds for NIH’s 27 institutes and centers for research in areas including biomarkers, precision medicine, infectious diseases, antibiotics, and basic research. The remainder would go to young scientists (at least 35%); high-risk, high-reward research; and NIH intramural research.