HomeWashington Letter2016 ▶ President Obama Unveils Proposed 2017 Budget
President Obama Unveils Proposed 2017 Budget

February 2016

President Obama released his proposed budget for fiscal year 2017. The President's budget is the first step in the 2017 spending process and serves as a guideline for the congressional appropriations committees, which will begin drafting FY2017 spending bills within the next few months.

The President's 2017 budget proposes an $825 million funding increase over the FY2016 level for the NIH, although these funds are targeted to the Vice President's Cancer Moonshot initiative, and the Precision Medicine and BRAIN initiatives. With the exception of the NCI, all other NIH institutes are flat funded in the President's proposed budget.

While the flat funding for all but one of the NIH Institutes is not welcome news, no one expects Congress to adopt the President's spending allocations for NIH (or other programs for that matter).  The ATS Washington Office staff expects Congress will provide more balanced increases for all NIH Institutes.

The health research initiatives featured in the president's FY2017 budget are:

  • The Vice President's Cancer Moonshot Initiative – The budget proposes a multi-year initiative with $680 million proposed for the NIH in FY2017 to expand clinical trials for health disparity populations, pursue new vaccine technology, and fund opportunities in cancer research.
  • Precision Medicine Initiative – The budget proposes $300 million for NIH, an increase of $107 million above FY2016, to support development of a research cohort of more than a million individuals to gather data on the interplay of environmental exposures, physical parameters, and genetic information.
  • AHRQ Evidence-based Healthcare Practice – The president's budget proposes an increase of $24 million for health services research at the AHRQ to further develop the evidence base of effective practices. Additionally, $9 million is proposed for a new AHRQ project to better coordinate care for patients with multiple chronic conditions by developing and piloting tools based on integrated care plans.

Under the FY2017 budget proposal, the CDC's overall funding level is slated for a $194 million funding cut compared to FY 2016.

The proposed budgets for the CDC programs that the ATS monitors are:

  • Asthma – Flat funding at the FY2016 level of $29 million.
  • National Institute of Occupational Safety & Health– a proposed $53.5 million funding cut over the FY2016 level for proposed funding of $285 million.
  • Tobacco – Flat funding at the FY2016 level of $210 million.
  • Domestic tuberculosis control – Flat funding at the FY2016 level at $142.2 million.

Antibiotic Resistance
The FY2017budget proposes $877 million to further expand the administration's antibiotic resistance detection, treatment and prevention efforts through CDC, NIH, FDA, VA and USDA. The , increase of $43 million over FY2016 will bolster the Nation's ability to fight antibiotic resistance, aligning with the Administration's National Action Plan for Combating Antibiotic -Resistant Bacteria. These investments will augment efforts to implement interventions to reduce the emergence and spread of antibiotic -resistant pathogens. In addition, the funding will support ongoing research aimed at developing new drugs and diagnostic products.

VA Research Program
The president's FY 2017 budget includes $663.4 million for VA Medical and Prosthetic Research, a $32.7 million (5.2 percent) increase over the FY 2016 enacted level.

The FY2017 budget proposes a significant 19% funding cut to USAID's TB program, despite the release of the National Action Plan to Combat MDR-TB, a plan with ambitious targets over 5 years for treating 200,000 global MDR patients and reducing MDR-TB in the U.S. by 15% by 2020. This is the third year in a row that the administration has proposed this cut to the TB program.

The president's FY2017 budget proposes $8.3 billion for the EPA, about $200 million over the FY2016 funding level of $8.1 billion.

Last Reviewed: October 2017