ASTMH Responds to White House Proposed Budget

Posted 14 March 2019

2020 White House Budget Proposal is Shortsighted and a Threat to U.S. Health, Warns ASTMH

Alexandria, Va. (March 14, 2019)—The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (ASTMH), the largest international scientific organization of tropical infectious disease experts, is alarmed by the White House’s 2020 budget proposal released March 11, as it ignores the critical scientific research across many government agencies designed to protect the health and well-being of millions of Americans at home and abroad.
Severe cuts to funding for global health research and development within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and global health programs at the U.S. State Department threaten our global security.
And while President Trump’s budget increases funding for programs designed to virtually eliminate tuberculosis and HIV in America, paradoxically it proposes drastic cuts to worldwide efforts to fight these diseases. If the government slashes funding for important global health programs that have helped treat millions internationally like the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, we risk an increase in the rates of these diseases globally and, eventually, inevitably, in the United States.
Additionally, drastic reductions to the budget at the National Institutes of Health’s institutes tasked with infectious disease and global health research and collaboration will erode decades of progress and previous resources invested in tracking, preventing and treating current infectious diseases, putting the future health of the nation at risk. 
These cuts aren’t just about dollars — these cuts will eliminate research projects that seek to combat diseases that harm and kill men, women and children every day. Disease ignores time zones and geographic borders. Every U.S. taxpayer deserves an investment in research that works to protect Americans at home and abroad from infectious diseases, spurs U.S. leadership and innovation, and advances the decades of scientific progress.