The Global ID Center’s Christine Lubinski made a powerful plea for increased funding for global HIV & TB programs to key House lawmakers Wednesday.
Testifying before the House appropriations subcommittee that funds NIH and CDC, Lubinski said the growing incidence of drug-resistant TB presents an urgent global health threat, requiring a quick and forceful response from U.S. policymakers.
“Drug-resistant tuberculosis is a direct result of human failure—failure to adequately treat TB and to develop the necessary tools to effectively address this ancient, deadly scourge,” Lubinski told the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies.
The increase of MDR and XDR-TB have “triggered grave alarm in the scientific community about the potential for an untreatable XDR-TB epidemic,” she said. “Drug resistant TB anywhere in the world easily translates into drug-resistant TB everywhere.”
Lubinski urged lawmakers to double the NIH research budget for TB. She also said lawmakers should allocate $210 million for the CDC’s Division of TB Elimination and $225 million for the CDC’s Global AIDS Program. And she asked the subcommittee to appropriate $900 million through the NIH budget for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, which is facing a $5 billion donation shortfall.
Add your voice to the chorus! Lawmakers are just beginning the annual appropriations process, so now is the time to weigh in. Tell your Senate and House members that now is NOT the time to shortchange these vital global HIV and TB programs.