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Please Support Robust Funding for FDA for FY 22

May 16, 2021

The Alliance will submit testimony to the Appropriations Committees in support of robust funding for FDA. The Senate deadline is May 28, and the House deadline is June 1. We encourage Alliance members (and others) to submit testimony so that the committees can better appreciate the breadth of stakeholder support for the FDA, as well as the diverse ways that FDA touches American lives. Details on submitting testimony can be found here and Alliance members seeking assistance should contact Roger Szemraj (see below).

This column provides guidance on key points and themes that Alliance members can customize into their own testimony. It may also be useful to review the Alliance’s one-pager that we have circulated on the Hill.

EVERYONE SHOULD INCLUDE IN THEIR TESTIMONY

Thank the Committees for their past bipartisan support of FDA’s resource needs. Give them a specific example in your own area where increased funding has made an important difference. I usually point to the FDA’s ability to meet with stakeholders and do public outreach that it did not have the resources to do a decade ago. Use something that you could talk about in detail if a committee staffer were to call you.

For FY 22, the Alliance is asking for no less than $200 million above the FY 21 budget authority funding level. After we see the President’s request, we expect to add details to this “ask.”

Urge Congress to recognize the multiple opportunities for additional investments in FDA that will result in substantial added value to the American public.

AREAS TO CONSIDER FOR YOUR TESTIMONY (which is limited to 5 pages).

Provide your point-of-view about the breadth and complexity of FDA mission and responsibilities. You might want to use an example that illustrates the Alliance’s statement that “no federal agency’s mission and responsibilities are more affected by changes in science, technology, innovation, commerce, and social trends than the FDA.”

Wholly apart from COVID-19, FDA’s responsibilities increased in 2020 and will again in 2021 and 2022. I usually say this is a combination of new areas where FDA is being called upon to act and existing workloads that continue to expand and become more complex. However, say this in your own words and provide your own examples.

Investment in technology and data modernization is a pressing agency need that affects both food and medical products. Dr. Woodcock, in her remarks to the Alliance, described the need for “enterprise-wide platforms and common data standards.” Congress is often skeptical of such requests, so it will be more meaningful if you can point to a concrete example where such an investment will benefit the American public.

The Alliance has highlighted six areas, relevant to both food safety and medical products, where FDA and the American people would benefit from investments in the agency. If one or more of them are particularly important to you, explain why.

  1. Shortening Supply Lines/Advanced Manufacturing
  2. Product Safety and Tracking
  3. Regulatory Science
  4. Building Expertise to Match New Science
  5. Modernization of FDA’s Data Infrastructure and Technological Capacity
  6. Public Health Priorities, including nutrition

If you need help or want feedback, the entire Alliance staff is available to assist you. Contact Roger Szemraj, who will be coordinating our efforts.

Editorial Note: The Analysis and Commentary section is written by Steven Grossman, Executive Director of the Alliance for a Stronger FDA.

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