Fact sheet: Impact of Sequestration on the National Institutes of

For Immediate Release: M=
onday, June 3, 2013

sheet: Impact of Sequestration on the National Institutes of Health


The Nationa=
l Institutes of Health is the nation’s medical research agency and the leading
supporter of biomedical research in the world. NIH’s mission is t=
o seek fundamental knowledge about the nature and behavior
of living systems and apply that knowledge to enhance health, lengthen lif=
e, and reduce the burdens of illness and disability. Due in large measure t=
o NIH research,
a person born in the United States today can expect to live nearly 30 year=
s longer than someone born in 1900.


More than 80 percent of the NIH’s budget goes
to over 300,000 research personnel at more than 2,500 universities and res=
earch institutions throughout the United States. In addition, about 6,000 s=
cientists work in NIH’s own Intramural Research laboratories, most of=
which are on the NIH main campus in Bethesda,
Md. The main campus is also home to the NIH Clinical Cen=
ter, the largest hospital in the world totally dedicated to clinical re=



On March 1, 2013, as req=
uired by statute, President Obama signed an order initiating sequestration.=
The sequestration requires NIH to cut 5 percent or $1.55 billion of its fi=
scal year (FY) 2013 budget. NIH must
apply the cut evenly across all programs, projects, and activities (PPAs),=
which are primarily NIH institutes and centers. This means every area of m=
edical research will be affected.


FY2013 operating plans:

NIH FY2013 Operating Plan

NIH FY2013 Operating Plan Mechani=
sm Table

NIH Guide Notice: Fi=
scal Policy for Grant Awards FY2013

NIH Institutes and Centers =
FY2013 Funding Strategies


The =
estimated numbers:

(FY 2013 figures compare=
d to FY 2012)

While much of these decr=
eases are due to sequester, NIH funding is always a dynamic situation with =
multiple drivers:

ximately 700 fewer competitive research project grants issuedApproximately750 fewer new patients admitted to the NIH Cl=
inical CenterNo increase in stipends for National Research Service Award recipients
in FY2013


The =

in medical progress:

al breakthroughs do not happen overnight. In almost all instances, breakthr=
ough discoveries result from years of incremental research to understand ho=
w disease starts and progresses.Even after t=
he cause and potential drug target of a disease is discovered, it takes on =
average 13 years and $1 billion to develop a treatment for that target.Therefore, cuts to research are delaying progres=
s in medical breakthroughs, including:

opment of better cancer drugs that zero in on a tumor with fewer side effec=
tsresearch on a universal flu vaccine that c=
ould fight every strain of influenza without needing a yearly shot.prevention of debilitating chronic conditions that a=
re costly to society and delay development of more effective treatments for=
common and rare diseases affecting millions of Americans.

Risk =
to scientific workforce:

NIH d=
rives job creation and economic growth. NIH research funding directly suppo=
rts hundreds of thousands of American jobs and serves as a foundation for t=
he medical innovation sector, which
employs 1 million U.S. citizens. Cuts to NIH funding will have an economic=
impact in communities throughout the U.S. For every six applications submi=
tted to the NIH, only one will be funded. Sequestration is reducing the ove=
rall funding available for grants.&nb=
the history of NIH funding success rates.


uently asked questions:


How many fewer grants=
will be awarded?

Approximately 700 fewer research project grants compared to FY 2012.


Have the institutes a=
nd centers announced their adjusted paylines based on these cuts?

The adjusted NIH Institute and Center (IC) paylines and funding strategies =
can be found here:http://grants.nih.gov/grants/financial/index.htm#strategies


What percent cut will=
be made to existing grants?

Reductions to noncompeting research project grants (RPG) vary depending on =
the circumstances of the particular IC. The NIH-wide average is -4.7 percen=


Will the duration of =
existing grants be shortened to accommodate the cuts?

In general, no.


Will all grants recei=
ve the same percentage cut or will some grants be cut more than others?

Institutes and centers have flexibility to accommodate the new budget level=
in a fashion that allows them to meet their scientific and strategic goals=
. As noted above, there are different percentages for different ICs, and in=
some cases for different mechanisms
within an IC (RPGs, Centers, etc.). In addition, there may be reductions t=
o grants for reasons other than sequestration, as is the case every year.


Will certain areas of=
science that are at a critical juncture be affected by these cuts? 

All areas of science are expected to be affected.


Will some areas of sc=
ience be affected more than others?

The sequester does not stipulate the precise reduction to each scientific a=
rea. However, it is likely that most scientific areas will be reduced by ab=
out 5 percent because the sequester is being applied broadly at the NIH ins=
titute and center level.


What will be the impa=
ct of these cuts to NIH’s intramural research at its Bethesda campus =
and off-campus facilities?

The impact on NIH’s intramural research is substantial, especially be=
cause it applies retroactively to spending since Oct. 1, 2012. That can dou=
ble the effect — a full year’s cut has to be absorbed in less t=
han half a year.


Will NIH be furloughi=
ng or cutting employees at its NIH campus and off-campus facilities?

There are no current plans to do so. At present, HHS is pursuing non-furlou=
gh administrative cost savings such as delayed/forgone hiring and reducing =
administrative services contracts so that furloughs and layoffs can be avoi=
ded. Additionally, employee salaries
at NIH make up a very small percentage (only 7 percent) of the NIH budget.=


How will current pati=
ents at the NIH Clinical Center be affected?

Services to patients will not be reduced.


Will the NIH Clinical=
Center see fewer patients because of the cuts?

Approximately 750 fewer new patients will be admitted to the NIH Clinical C=
enter hospital in 2013 or a decrease from 10,695 new patients in 2012 to ap=
proximately 9,945 new patients in 2013. While much of this decrease is due =
to funding, clinical activity is
always a dynamic situation with multiple drivers.


Will the sequester cu=
t need to be applied to the FY 2014 budget?

The President’s FY 2014 Budget would replace sequestration and reduce=
the deficit in a balanced way. The President is ready to work with Congres=
s to further reduce deficits while continuing to make critical investments.=


About the National In=
stitutes of Health (NIH):

NIH, the nation’s medica=
l research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of=
the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary feder=
al agency conducting and supporting
basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating =
the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For mo=
re information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

NIH…Turning Discove=
ry Into Health®

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