Update: On 3/11/22, President Biden SIGNED the FY2022 spending bill into law, implementing key ovarian cancer program increases. This represents a major win for the ovarian cancer community, and we applaud all who lent their voices to earn this victory.
If you have ever lent your voice on behalf of our shared mission, you — and all of us in the ovarian cancer community — have much to celebrate. On March 9, 2022, Congress published the text of the FY22 omnibus spending bill (multiple smaller appropriation bills bundled into one bill that can be passed as a single package in each chamber) and it represents great news!
- The Ovarian Cancer Research Program (OCRP), part of the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP), is set to receive $45 million, which is $10 million more than last year’s funding level. OCRP is one of the only cancer research programs within the CDMRP to receive an increase this year. OCRP is now the fourth largest cancer research program at the CDMRP (and the seventh largest out of 37 overall research programs.)
- The ovarian cancer education and awareness programs at Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also received increases. Both Johanna’s Law and the Ovarian Cancer Control Initiative received $500,000 more than their previous funding levels. Johanna’s Law, which supports a variety of programs, research projects and activities aimed at educating healthcare providers and the general population alike, will be funded at $10.5 million; the Ovarian Cancer Control Initiative, a program that monitors demographic data and other factors at the population level around ovarian cancer diagnosis, treatment, and survival, will receive $12.5 million.
- National Cancer Institute (NCI) also received a significant increase of $353 million for FY22, which, at a 5.4% increase, outpaces the overall increase for the National Institutes of Health.
- Congress is also set to fund ARPA-H at $1 billion. ARPA-H, Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health, is a brand-new department designed to advance biomedical breakthroughs ranging from molecular to societal. It is modeled after DARPA, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which led to the Internet and GPS. While the President had requested $6.5 billion over a three-year investment, this is a good start. We don’t yet know where this new agency will be housed, but we are happy that there is bipartisan support behind the moonshot effort.
This budget represents a major victory for the ovarian cancer community, and we urge Congress to finalize the budget as soon as possible.