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  • Washington Highlights

    GOP Committee Chairs Ask President-elect to Keep NIH Director

    Tannaz Rasouli, Sr. Director, Public Policy & Strategic Outreach

    The chairs of four congressional committees with jurisdiction over the National Institutes of Health (NIH) sent a Dec. 2 letter urging President-elect Donald Trump to keep Francis Collins, MD, PhD, as NIH Director in the new administration.

    In the letter, Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee Chair Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Senate Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee Chair Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Fred Upton (R-Mich.), and House Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee Chair Tom Cole (R-Okla.), note, “Dr. Collins is the right person, at the right time, to continue to lead the world’s premier biomedical research agency. He possesses all the attributes one should have as the Director of the National Institutes of Health – intellectual prowess, renowned scientific experience, and outstanding leadership skills.”

    The letter continues, “We are confident that under his leadership and with Congress’ commitment to biomedical research as a national priority, the National Institutes of Health will thrive and continue to enhance the Nation’s health through scientific discovery and biomedical research.”

    Dr. Collins was unanimously confirmed as NIH Director in 2009, after the Senate HELP Committee advanced the nomination to the full Senate for a voice vote.