UPDATE: Mesothelioma Included in Department of Defense Bill

Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs logoOn July 24, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a Defense Funding Bill that included $16 million in funding that is eligible to be awarded to mesothelioma research.

The House approved the fiscal year 2014 Defense Appropriations bill (H.R. 2397) on a vote of 315 to 109. The bill includs funding for the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs, including the Peer Reviewed Cancer Research Program in which mesothelioma is a topic area.

Each year, the Meso Foundation advocates to continue and increase this vital funding. As a result, $8.8 million dollars has been given to mesothelioma research to date. This is a victory in today’s tough economic climate.

For more information, read our earlier blog regarding this topic.

Mesothelioma Included in Department of Defense Spending Bill

cdmrp_logoEarlier this month, the House Appropriations Committee passed the FY2014 Defense Appropriations Bill, which included mesothelioma as a topic area in their Peer Reviewed Cancer Research Program for the third year.  Mesothelioma researchers will be eligible to apply for $15 million in research funding.

Mesothelioma has been included on the list of diseases eligible to receive funding through the Department of Defense’s Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program (CDMRP) since Fiscal Year 2008. The CDMRP has funded a total of $8.9 million in mesothelioma research to date. In Fiscal Years 2008, 2009, and 2010 it was included in the Peer Reviewed Medical Research Program (PRMRP) to compete for $50 million dollars.

In 2011, due to the advocacy of the mesothelioma community, it was moved to the Peer Reviewed Cancer Research Program (PRCRP), to compete with a smaller number of topic areas for $16 million.  In 2012, this sparse amount of funding was decreased to $12.8 million. It returned to $16 million in 2013. The $15 million included in the House Defense Bill is slightly more than a 6% cut from the 2013 amount.

“We are pleased that the advocacy of the mesothelioma community has continued to secure this funding for mesothelioma for the 7th consecutive year,” said the executive director of the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation, Mary Hesdorffer, Nurse Practitioner.  “We commend Congress for recognizing the increased risk of developing mesothelioma for our service men and women and continuing to fund this much needed research.”

This bill will next move to the House Floor, and then on to the Senate. The Meso Foundation will continue to follow the appropriations process, so stay tuned for more information.