On April 10, 2013, President Obama released his budget proposal for fiscal year 2014. If adopted by Congress, it will have a positive impact on the bleeding disorders community.
First, the budget proposes maintaining funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Division of Blood Disorders at current levels. CDC provides support for research and surveillance at hemophilia treatment centers (HTCs), and patient education programs and resources, such as NHF’s First Step program and HANDI. The budget also noted the success of the numerous research studies conducted at participating HTCs (such as the CDC’s Universal Data Collection) and the continued efforts of the American Thrombosis and Hemostasis Network.
The budget proposal also included maintaining the hemophilia program through the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau at its current level. This funding is used to support patient care, allowing HTCs to provide case management, social work and other services that are typically not covered by health insurance.
Given the extremely difficult fiscal environment, the funding levels in the 2014 budget proposal should be considered a success. This proposal is now added to the complex budget negotiation process. We are at the beginning of the appropriations process, and NHF will continue to advocate for funding for bleeding disorders programs at each step along the way.