Research funding cuts

Lost in the recent U.S. Government shutdown crisis was the effect it had on individual people in any number of ways. One of the many effects of continued budget cuts has been the slashing of medical research funding.

In an editorial in the Oct. 15th Boston Globe, Brigham & Women’s Hospital President Dr. Betsy Nabel pointed out that funding for the National Institutes of Health has been cut so drastically in recent years that it is actually having to turn away patients seeking to enter clinical trials.

What can be done to turn this chain of events around? Parkinson’s patients, their supporters and allies need to stand and advocate for the restoration of funding for biomedical research.

Here are some suggestions on how:

Write letters and call your Senators and Representatives
Start petitions to send to lawmakers
Write letters to the editor of your newspaper
Invite local media to Parkinson’s events

The more visibility we bring to the need for treatments and the vital role biomedical research plays in treatment development and our economy, the better chance we have of gaining the restoration of funding to the level it was before the budget cutting began.

There will always be debate about government budgets. We must work to make sure the policy makers setting the budgets remember the people their decisions affect.

Be well…Jesse

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