The House approved two spending packages to determine fiscal year (FY) 2021 funding levels for most of the federal government, including agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Veterans Affairs.
The package (H.R. 7617) of six FY 2021 spending bills passed by a vote of 217-197 on July 31 includes increased funding over FY 2020 levels for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)-administered workforce and pipeline programs, and other key health security programs.
The House completed consideration of amendments to the Appropriations Committee-passed Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies spending bill [see Washington Highlights, July 17] on July 30, providing $29 million in increases to specific NIH Institutes and Centers for a total NIH budget of $47 billion. The amended bill provided slight increases to the HRSA Title VII Area Health Education Centers and Title VIII Nurse Corps program. Among other provisions, lawmakers also adopted by voice vote two amendments to increase funding for firearm injury and mortality prevention research at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) by $5 million, yielding a total of $30 million at the CDC for such work.
Separately, the House approved a four-bill package (H.R. 7608), including the FY 2021 Military Construction, Department of Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies spending bill, by a vote of 224-189 on July 24. The minibus maintained the committee-approved funding levels for the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical and Prosthetic Research program [see Washington Highlights, July 10].
The House has passed 10 of the 12 annual spending bills, while the Senate has yet to begin its work on FY 2021 appropriations.