The spending bill for 2018 passed in the House Thursday, and the Senate early today has delivered a robust rejection of the President’s proposals to slash science spending while massively cutting funds for global infectious disease responses, with a combination of level funding and a few notable raises.
They include with a $3 billion boost for the National Institutes of Health that includes a bump of $3.5 million for the institutes’ global research and training Fogarty International Center now funded at a total of $75.7 million – a welcome boost for a program the Administration had proposed eliminating.
While PEPFAR will continue at its FY 17 level $4.32 billion and the Global Fund at $1.35 billion, and the USAID TB program gets an additional $20 million over FY 2017 levels, to total $261 million. The President’s FY 18 budget request had proposed eliminating the USAID HIV program, but the omnibus continues it at current levels of $330 million. USAID global health security efforts will receive $172.6 million, of which $100 million comes from unspent Ebola emergency supplemental money. CDC global health programs will get a bump up of $53.5 million, of which $50 million will go towards global health security activities.
The bill, however, needs to be signed by the President before midnight tonight to keep the government from shutting down. While yesterday the White House indicated the President intends to sign the bill, this morning he tweeted that he may veto the bill because it doesn’t include funding for a border wall and doesn’t address DACA. If he doesn’t sign, we’ll have another shutdown at midnight.