March 16, 2017

March 16, 2017
Washington, D.C.

President Trumps Budget will Harm the Health of Americans

President Trump stated that his budget, released today, is to “make the safety of our people its number one priority.”  However, he needs to understand it's going to do the exact opposite: it will harm the health of American’s and the nation’s prosperity.

The proposed budget’s cuts:

  • $5.8B to The National Institutes for Health, the world's premier institute for developing biomedical innovations will damage the organization’s ability to carry out its work that saves lives, creates thousands of jobs and adds billions of dollars to the US economy. The budget includes eliminating the Fogarty International Center. The smallest of all NIH centers, with a budget of just $69.1 million, it creates vital partnerships between US researchers and their counterparts around the world to address the health threats we face. Its impact goes far beyond the investment. Strengthening America’s ties with nations through science and global health diplomacy creates networks of collaboration that only improve global security. Collectively, NIH’s 27 centers fund research in the diseases that can affect anyone including: cancer, heart disease, addiction, lung disease, diabetes, mental health, infectious diseases and more. Defunding this capability harms the US’ preeminent role in health research.

  • A 31% reduction in the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) funding will result in a loss of 3200 jobs, eliminate vital programs that protect Americans from air and water pollution, eliminate initiatives that clean up polluted areas and cripple its enforcement branch that protects people from polluters. These cuts will also eliminate renewable energy programs that are enabling people to access cleaner and increasingly less expensive power.

  • Cuts to the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration and NASA will undermine the US’ ability to monitor environmental changes that are vital to the nation’s ability to respond to environmental changes.

In this budget, the Defense Department will receive an increase of $54 billion. Yet military leaders and their colleagues at the State Department have repeatedly stated that preventing instability, disease transmission, and the impact of climate and environmental degradation enhance domestic and global security.  It is far less costly in lives and resources to prevent these problems than address them after they have arisen.

Congress and the President indeed have an obligation to improve the security of the people of this great nation.  They also have an duty to do no harm. 
To achieve this, they need to invest in, not cut, these world renowned scientific institutions that improve the health, security, and prosperity of Americans.

For more information contact:

Keith Martin MD, PC
Executive Director
Consortium of Universities for Global Health
Washington, DC