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Dec. 17, 2015

TOPIC: Advocacy

What the Omnibus Bill Means for Rare Diseases

Posted by Jennifer Huron

U.S. SenateUPDATE (12/18/2015 12:20 p.m.):  The House and Senate voted Friday to pass the omnibus spending bill that funds the government through September 2016. The House moved first, passing the government funding bill on a 316-113 vote. The Senate followed with a 65-33 vote. The bill moves to President Obama’s desk where it is expected to be signed into law.

The House and Senate are expected to vote Friday to pass an omnibus spending bill that would fund the government through September 2016. Included are several important developments for the rare disease community:

First, the NIH sees a $2 billion boost (7% increase) in funding and the FDA has an additional $132 million (5% increase), including a $2.5 million increase to the orphan products grants program, which is fantastic news all around.  Second, the rare pediatric disease PRV program was extended through September.  It had been set to expire in March.

These increase opportunities for research and innovation in areas where we so desperately need new treatments to help patients, and for those to then be reviewed for safety and efficacy in a timely manner.

These are policy wins that NORD has worked hard for on behalf of the community in our advocacy and policy work.  Visit our Policy Statements page to read up on our activity in these, and other, legislative areas.
omnibus legislation 2015