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Advocacy at a Glance

October 27, 2017

Advocacy at a Glance offers you the bullet point summary of current advocacy issues associated with the goals of the Alliance for a Stronger FDA.

  • House Passes FY 18 Budget Resolution, Setting Up BCA Amendments and Appropriations. On Thursday, the House voted to adopt the version of the FY 2018 budget resolution that had previously passed the Senate. The main feature is that the resolution allows for up to $1.5 trillion over 10 years to be allocated for tax reform (i.e., it doesn’t need to be deficit neutral). Critical to the Alliance’s interests: the budget envisions FY 18 appropriations that are $72 billion above the budget caps for defense programs and $5 billion below for non-defense programs. The defense increases will require Congress to enact amendments to the Budget Control Act of 2011 (BCA) and some Members of Congress are likely to press for increases in non-defense spending at the same time. We previously explored why the budget debate matters to the appropriations process, as well as to FDA specifically.
  • Analysis and Commentary Continues the Theme: “Not Your Father’s FDA.”  Last week’s Analysis and Commentary explored changes and growth at FDA and concluded: “we should be saying more about the agency’s maturation in both process and attitude. It reflects extraordinary progress in becoming a 21st century regulatory agency.” This week’s column further explores this topic and points to the role that additional resources play in agency progress.
  • FDA Wants Public Input on Improving the Agency’s Website.  One of FDA’s goals in FY 18 is to improve the website to make it faster and easier for the public to find information. To aid in this process, FDA is asking users to participate in a 15-20 minute  online exercise that involves sorting 40 topics into groupings. Users are likely to give varying answers; a large number of participants will allow meaningful patterns to emerge. Alliance members are encouraged to help the agency by completing the exercise. A better FDA website helps all of us in our work and, importantly, promotes public understanding of FDA’s broad responsibilities.

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