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AACR, Founding Organizer and Lead Sponsor of the 9th Annual Rally for Medical Research Hill Day, to Advocate for Continued Growth in Federal Funding for NIH

More than 350 organizations join forces again this year to improve health, inspire hope, and save lives

WASHINGTON, D.C. — As the founding organizer and lead sponsor for the ninth annual Rally for Medical Research Hill Day on September 23, the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) will join more than 350 other organizations to advocate for robust, sustained, and predictable annual funding increases for the National Institutes of Health (NIH). This year’s Hill Day will be a virtual event.

Hill Day participants will urge members of Congress to continue their steadfast support for NIH by providing the agency with at least $46.4 billion for its base program budget in fiscal year (FY) 2022 and at least $10 billion in supplemental funding for research impacted by the pandemic.

“During the past six years, Congress has shown an extraordinary commitment to prioritizing funding for medical research through its efforts to increase NIH’s budget by nearly $13 billion, or 42 percent,” said Jon Retzlaff, chief policy officer and vice president of science policy and government affairs for the American Association for Cancer Research. “Therefore, during our Hill Day we will also be thanking Congress for this wonderful past support, which is allowing our nation’s basic researchers and physician-scientists to significantly accelerate the pace of progress against the hundreds of diseases that afflict millions of Americans.”

On September 22, the virtual Rally for Medical Research reception will feature remarks fromNIH leaders and congressional champions of medical research.

On September 23, more than 400 scientists, health professionals, and patient advocates from nearly every state will meet with House and Senate members and their staff to emphasize the importance and impact of investing in NIH:

  • Ninety-five percent of the NIH budget goes directly to research awards, programs, and centers; training programs; and research and development contracts.
  • Each year, NIH awards more than 60,000 research and training grants. These grants support approximately 300,000 researchers at more than 2,500 universities and organizations in every state.
  • NIH-funded research contributed to every one of the 210 new drugs approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration between 2010 and 2016.
  • In FY2020, research funded by NIH supported more than 536,000 jobs and more than $91 billion in economic activity across the U.S.

In conjunction with the Hill Day, advocates across the country will participate in the Rally National Day of Action. Partner organizations will encourage their communities to contact their members of Congress via phone, email, and social media to urge their support for a $3.5 billion increase for NIH in FY2022. 

The Rally for Medical Research initiative was launched in April 2013 to bring together the entire medical research community to urge Congress to make NIH funding a national priority. Through the annual Hill Day, the Rally for Medical Research continues to raise awareness about the critical need for continued investment in NIH to improve health, spur progress, inspire hope, and save lives.