Congress Set to Approve Millions in Lupus Funding
UPDATE: on March 10, the Senate passed the omnibus spending package and on March 15, President Joe Biden signed it into law.
Moments ago, the United States House of Representatives approved an omnibus spending package for fiscal year 2022 that includes millions in federal funding for critical lupus research and education programs. Passage comes after the House and Senate came to an agreement on the details of the omnibus package late last night – the Senate is expected to approve the omnibus early next week before it is signed into law by the president.
We are thrilled to announce that the spending package includes funding for several critical lupus priorities:
- $9.5 million for the National Lupus Patient Registry at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), bringing total funding for the program to more than $91 million since its creation in 2003;
- $10 million for the Lupus Research Program at the Department of Defense (DOD), the third consecutive year of $10 million after the program received $5 million in each of its first three years, bringing total funding for lupus research at the DOD to over $66 million;
- $64.8 million for the Office of Minority Health (OMH), which includes the National Lupus Training, Outreach, and Clinical Trial Education Program, and language directing OMH to continue programs that aim to increase minority participation in lupus clinical trials;
- $45 billion for the National Institutes of Health, an increase of $2.5 billion over fiscal year 2021 for the largest public funder of lupus research in the world.
When the package is signed into law next week, lupus advocates will have generated nearly $180 million in federal funding for lupus-specific programs since 2003.
Lupus Advocates Lead the Way
As with any advocacy victory, this would not have been possible without the thousands of lupus advocates who have raised their voices and shared their experiences with lupus to their members of Congress over the past year. The determination and commitment of lupus advocates continue to break through the noise on Capitol Hill, and we are grateful to work side-by-side with each and every one to secure victories like this one.
We are also grateful for our champions on Capitol Hill, most notably the co-chairs of the Congressional Lupus Caucus – Eddie Bernice Johnson of Texas, Bill Keating of Massachusetts, and Andrew Garbarino of New York.
The Senate is expected to approve the legislation next week, and it will then be signed into law by President Joe Biden.
Despite the long-awaited fiscal year 2022 funding only recently approaching the finish line, the Foundation has already begun working to secure continued and increased funding for lupus programs in fiscal year 2023, most recently by convening the Advocacy Leadership Symposium earlier this week. To help us write the next success story, sign up as an advocate.