BREAKTHROUGHS BLOG

October 03, 2012

Roundup: What will sweeping budget cuts do to health and research efforts?

Communications Officer
GHTC

Over the past few weeks—as Congress worked on a budget deal to keep the federal government running through the end of March 2013—several global health and international development groups released new reports about what looming, across-the-board cuts would do to these programs worldwide. Groups are worried about the likely devastating impact of sequestration on US-funded global health, research, science, and development programs.

Sequestration would require a reduction in government spending of $109 billion per year for nine years, beginning in January 2013. It’s expected that the resulting indiscriminate, across-the-board cuts would result in a 9.4 percent cut for most defense programs relevant to global health—including global health research and development (R&D) programs at the Department of Defense (DoD). Non-defense programs—including most programs at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the State Department, and the US Agency for International Development (USAID)—that are not exempt from cuts would receive an 8.2 percent cut.

Some groups are worried about the likely devastating impact of sequestration on US-funded global health, research, science, and development programs.

Below, we provide a round-up of some of these new analysis pieces, detailing the human impact of these sweeping cuts.

With most members of Congress gearing up for the November elections, we hope that they’re paying attention to these reports and listening to the chorus of voices calling for a real, long-term solution to the budget. Both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama have been taking about foreign assistance lately, and the issue will stay on the candidates’ minds as they participate in an upcoming debate focused on international issues. Preventing sequestration needs to be a priority in these conversations.

back