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The New Jersey Life Sciences Vendors Alliance (NJLSVA) is a coalition of businesses, individuals and academia who provide goods and services to New Jersey’s life sciences companies.

The NJLSVA was founded to educate suppliers on trends in industry procurement and public policy that affects the life sciences industry.

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Trump Budget Proposes Deep Cuts to Medical Research and Health Care

Washington, DC, May 24, 2017 — Alison Kodjak and Rob Stein report on NPR that President Donald J. Trump’s proposed budget unveiled Tuesday doubles down on major cuts to biomedical research, programs to fight infectious disease outbreaks, health care for the poor, elderly and disabled, and prevention of HIV/AIDS.

The 2018 budget, which is entitled “A New Foundation for American Greatness,” restates the goals of the “skinny budget” the administration released in March, which was widely condemned by scientists and public health advocates.

Kodjak and Stein report that no one thinks the president’s budget will pass as proposed, since Congress has budget and spending authority.  But it does provide a baseline from which negotiations may begin.

Here’s a rundown of the proposed 2018 budget’s medical research and health care proposals.

Medicaid

The budget proposes cutting Medicaid and CHIP, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, by $616 billion over 10 years, with almost half the savings occurring in the last two years.

The joint federal-state programs provide health care and support services for 75 million low-income, elderly and disabled people, about half of whom are children.  In 2015, federal and state spending on Medicaid was about $545 billion.

The budget mirrors the changes in Medicaid included in the health care overhaul bill passed by the House earlier this month.

Rather than the federal government matching state spending based on beneficiaries’ health care needs, it would give states a fixed amount of money per enrollee or, alternatively, offer states a fixed block grant.

That would cut the program’s growth over time and reduce services because health care costs grow faster than the broad economy.

Medicaid Benefits for the Elderly and Disabled

Medicaid pays for services — including personal care, shopping or cooking for the elderly, and occupational therapy and work support for the disabled — that allow people to continue to live on their own.

Under the law, those services are considered optional. But Medicaid is required to pay for nursing home and institutional care.

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

The NIH, which funds research into medical treatments and basic science, would see cuts of almost $6 billion, to about $26 billion.

That would include a $575 million cut to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute and $838 million cut to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, which is involved in a wide range of diseases including AIDS and Zika. The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases would be cut by $355 million.

The proposed cuts drew immediate and harsh criticism.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The administration proposes trimming the CDC, which helps states and other countries fight infectious disease outbreaks, by $1.3 billion — 17 percent.

That could include a $186 million cut in programs at the CDC’s center on HIV/AIDS, hepatitis and other sexually transmitted diseases.

The CDC’s chronic disease prevention programs, such as those for diabetes, heart disease, stroke and obesity, would be cut by $222 million.

Food and Drug Administration

A 31 percent proposed cut, from $2.7 billion to $1.89 billion, would be offset by $1.3 billion in proposed increased fees to be paid by drugmakers and device-makers.

Planned Parenthood

The family-planning organization has been the target of efforts to cut funding for years because it provides about one-third of the nation’s abortions.

This budget would be the first to bar a specific provider, according to Planned Parenthood.

And it would bar the organization not only from Medicaid funding but also from any other Health and Human Services program, including the Title X family planning program, maternal and child health, STD testing and treatment, and Zika prevention.

For the full NPR report, click here.