On April 14, Congress passed, and the President signed the next day, legislation to fund the federal government for the remainder of fiscal year 2011, which ends September 30. The Senate, House of Representatives, and White House agreed to a budget of $1.049 trillion, which represents a total reduction in spending of more than $38 billion compared to fiscal year 2010. The Department of Health and Human Services faces a reduction of $3.4 billion, mostly from the decrease in spending or elimination of certain programs. Neither the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) nor the CDC Hemophilia programs were targeted for specific reductions in this budget. However, the total budgets for both CDC and the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA, the agency that houses the MCHB hemophilia program) have been reduced; those reductions could affect the hemophilia programs. In addition, the budget includes a 0.2% across-the-board reduction in spending for all nondefense discretionary programs.
It is not yet known how agencies will distribute funding under the budget across various programs. Hemophilia treatment centers receive $4.9 million through the Maternal and Child Health Block Grant at HRSA, and $7 million through the CDC’s Division of Blood Disorders. The agencies have flexibility in determining whether all programs are reduced by the same percentage or if some will be reduced more than others. How the cuts will affect hemophilia treatment centers has yet to be determined. NHF is working with policy makers to ensure minimum impact and will keep the community informed.