University of California President Janet Napolitano and the 10 UC chancellors urge support for passage of National Institutes of Health (NIH) research and medical innovations legislation before the 114th Congress adjourns. 

A fact sheet about UC and the Cures/Innovations legislation is available online here. A copy of the letter sent to Congress is provided below.

CALIFORNIA CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION

Dear Members of Congress:

On behalf of the University of California (UC), we urge your support for passage of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) research and medical innovations legislation before the 114th Congress adjourns. Final legislation — based on the 21st Century Cures Act (“Cures”) in the House of Representatives and the Senate’s 19 individual bills, making up the Innovations for Healthier Americans Act (“Innovations”) — is vital to accelerating health treatments and cures for all Americans.

The university’s world-class faculty and graduate academic and postdoctoral students lead the way in spurring medical innovations that improve, prolong and, in many cases, save patients’ lives. Robust and sustained NIH funding is central to the Cures/Innovations legislation, and is critical to UC fulfilling its public service mission to California and the nation. In fiscal year 2015, UC received over $1.8 billion from NIH — more than 50 percent of the total NIH funds to California that year. This essential investment enables California’s biomedical research industry to drive life-saving breakthroughs in science and employ hundreds of thousands of Californians.

The university asks you to support legislation that funds the Cancer Moonshot, the Precision Medicine, and the Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies (BRAIN) Initiatives. UC is deeply involved in all three endeavors: Our five National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Centers are collaborating to leverage medical advances through the sharing of several million cancer patients’ genomic data. BRAIN Initiative grants are supporting UC teams to develop new tools and technologies for a deeper understanding of brain functions and to accelerate new treatments for neurological disorders. In addition, through the NIH Precision Medicine Initiative Cohort Program, UC will engage one million or more U.S. participants in research to prevent and treat diseases based on differences in lifestyle, environment, and genetics.

UC medical discoveries and treatments have enriched millions of lives, and, with enactment of Cures/Innovations legislation, we can serve millions more. The Cures/Innovations legislation will also establish an infrastructure to promote a new generation of researchers and caregivers that is key to expanding the nation’s biomedical workforce and providing the necessary healthcare services to our patients.

Thank you for your support of the University of California. If you have any questions about the Cures/Innovations legislation and its effects on the university, please contact Associate Vice President for Federal Governmental Relations Gary Falle. He can be reached by email at Gary.Falle@ucdc.edu or by telephone at (202) 974-6319.

Yours very truly,

President Janet Napolitano
University of California

Chancellor Nicholas B. Dirks
University of California, Berkeley

Interim Chancellor Ralph Hexter
University of California, Davis

Chancellor Howard Gillman
University of California, Irvine

Chancellor Gene Block
University of California, Los Angeles

Chancellor Dorothy Leland
University of California, Merced

Chancellor Kim A. Wilcox
University of California, Riverside

Chancellor Pradeep Khosla
University of California, San Diego

Chancellor Sam Hawgood
University of California, San Francisco

Chancellor Henry T. Yang
University of California, Santa Barbara

Chancellor George R. Blumenthal
University of California, Santa Cruz