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Advocacy at a Glance

February 1, 2020

TOPLINE: This week’s Advocacy at a Glance announces a number of Alliance activities to which our members are invited to participate. This includes both Hill and FDA events, as well as a webinar on modernization of FDA’s technology. This week’s Analysis and Commentary looks at the key steps in the FY 21 appropriations cycle and the Alliance’s planned activities as advocates for increased FDA funding.

Upcoming Hill Opportunity for Alliance Members. On February 12, we will be meeting with the staff of the House and Senate Ag/FDA Appropriations Subcommittees, as well as the personal staff of many of the subcommittee members. We can use additional Alliance members for these meetings. Please let Reed Diskey know if you want to participate and whether you are available morning, afternoon, or all day.

Meetings with FDA Continue. On April 1 at 1:00 p.m. we will be meeting at FDA with Frank Yiannis, Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response. Please let let Reed know  know if you would like to participate. This will be an Alliance member-only meeting. This is the third of our FDA meetings this year. We completed our meeting with CBER Director, Dr. Peter Marks (meeting described here) on January 21 and we have a full team for our meeting on February 4 with CDRH Director, Dr. Jeffrey Shuren. Additional meetings are being planned.

Webinar February 19 with Dr. Abernethy on Technology Modernization at FDA. In September, the FDA released its Technology Modernization Action Plan (TMAP). This plan is intended to guide the multiple technological infrastructure needs of the agency and affects every consumer, patient, and company that looks to the FDA for scientifically-based decisions. To discuss the report and its implementation, Dr. Amy Abernethy, FDA’s Principal Deputy Commissioner and Acting Chief Information Officer will participate in an Alliance webinar, starting at 4:15 p.m. on February 19. The webinar is open to Alliance members and the media. If you would like to join in, please contact Reed for call-in directions.

Our Hill Day, Your Hill Day: Both Are Important. The Alliance’s Hill Day will be Wednesday, March 18. Please mark your calendars and sign up by contacting Reed. We will be setting up dozens of Hill meetings, so we can use participants all day or just in the morning or the afternoon. You do not have to be an Alliance member to be part of our Hill Day.

Many of our Alliance members also hold their own Hill days and we encourage you to include FDA’s increased funding needs among your “asks.” If you plan to do so, let us know the date and your needs (a one-pager, a paragraph, a chart, etc.) and we will be happy to support your efforts with regard to FDA funding. To follow-up on this, please contact Elizabeth Stower.

The FY 21 Appropriations Cycle Starts Next Week. The FY 21 appropriations cycle kicks off next week with the President’s State of the Union speech on February 4. This week’s Analysis and Commentary looks at the timing of that process and the key steps that must take place before enactment. Also described are the main Alliance activities designed to make the case to Congress that FDA needs additional resources. Our theme is: FDA’s growing responsibilities require a budget that grows.

Alliance Members Encouraged to Pay 2020 Dues This Quarter. All Alliance members received 2020 dues invoices in mid-November and more than half have already responded. If you have not, we encourage you to pay in the first quarter of 2020, if possible. If you need another copy of the invoice,  please follow-up with Reed. If you are not a member, please contact Steven Grossman for information about joining. We can never have enough voices in support of increased FDA appropriations.

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