On January 15, 2007 President Bush signed H.R. 6164 as P.L. 109-482, the National Institutes of Health Reform Act of 2006, affirming the importance of NIH and its vital role in advancing biomedical research to improve the health of the Nation.
- Provisions revised Title IV of the PHS Act and created the Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives, to recommend cross-cutting projects for support by the Common Fund.
- The bill authorizes, but does not appropriate, for NIH $30,331,309,000 for FY 2007, $32,831,309,000 for FY 2008 and such sums as necessary for FY 2009.
- The bill deletes most reports pertaining to NIH in current law and replaces them with one biennial report to Congress.
- The bill calls for the establishment of a Scientific Management Review Board to review the organization of NIH at least every seven years.
- The bill also authorizes the NIH Director to award grants for demonstration projects for research bridging the biological sciences with the physical, chemical, mathematical, and computational sciences; and authorizes the establishment of demonstration programs that award grants, contracts, or engage in other transactions, for high-impact, cutting-edge research demonstration programs.
(Note: The House passed the measure by a vote of 414 - 2 on September 26, 2006, the Senate passed an amended version by unanimous consent on December 8, 2006, and the House approved the Senate version by voice vote on December 9.)
- The NIH Director established an Ad Hoc Working Group of the NIH Steering Committee to be chaired by the NIH Deputy Director and comprised of IC Directors and leadership in legislation, policy, management, communications, extramural and intramural activities, budget, and the Office of General Counsel to make recommendations on the implementation of the legislation.
- The Ad Hoc Working Group completed a careful, detailed analysis of the legislation and carefully planned the implementation of this significant legislation.
The agency has successfully implemented the legislation. For example:
- NIH is using these new authorities to enable and expedite trans-NIH research, funded through the new Common Fund.
- The first Biennial Report was delivered to Congress in June of 2008, which explains NIH programs to Congress in one consolidated and transparent publication.
- The agency has moved ahead on an open and electronic disease funding report, by creating the Research, Condition, and Disease Categorization (RCDC) system, launched in February of 2009. RCDC utilizes a computer-based tool that applies a uniform process of accounting for NIH funding for diseases and conditions. The process produces a fully transparent list of grants underlying and supporting the dollar amounts for each reporting area.
- The Scientific Management Review Board will have its first meeting at the end of April 2009. The SMRB will serve as an important source of advice to NIH on organizational issues, helping to ensure that NIH's structure is optimal for supporting the advancement of science.
- NIH is in the process of drafting a report to Congress evaluating demonstration projects authorized by the Act.
P.L. 109-482 (H.R. 6164) , January 15, 2007
Summary of bill, Office of Legislative Policy and Analysis (OLPA)