Congress Averts Sequestration, But Only Until March 1On January 2, President Obama signed into law the "American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012" (HR 8) to extend expiring tax cuts and delay automatic spending cuts that were set to take effect. Of particular significance to hematologists, the law delays the across-the-board spending cuts known as sequestration, including cuts to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), until March 1. While the new law protects the country from going over the so-called fiscal cliff for the time being, NIH and other non-defense discretionary programs are not safeguarded from future cuts and a new cliff deadline. Read more.
One-Year 'Doc Fix' Included in Fiscal Cliff PackageThe American Taxpayer Relief Act includes a one-year payment patch for physicians who treat Medicare patients. The law also defers sequestration cuts for two months that included an additional two percent cut in Medicare payments. Physician practices would have been devastated if these cuts were not averted. Read more.
Supreme Court Denies Appeal in Stem Cell Research Case; Obama Administration Policy Expanding Federally-Funded hESC Research Allowed to StandIn a victory for all proponents of human embryonic stem cell (hESC) research, the Supreme Court has denied certiorari in the case of Shirley v. Sebelius, the long-standing lawsuit challenging federally-funded embryonic stem cell research, allowing for an earlier ruling against opponents of hESC research to stand. This ruling allows scientists to move forward in their hESC research confidently, without fear of the Obama Administration's policy on federal funding or the NIH's financial support being threatened. Read more.
NIH Releases Policies and Procedures for Promoting Scientific IntegrityThe NIH Office of the Director released a document entitled NIH Policies and Procedures for Promoting Scientific Integrity. The document details NIH's multifaceted approach to maintaining integrity and explains policies and processes, such as the peer review, funding, public accessibility, professional development, standards of integrity and objectivity in research, the use of federal advisory committees, and transparency in the policymaking.
NIH Extramural NewsletterExamines FY 2012 Success Rates, AwardsThe NIH Extramural Nexus provides regular updates on NIH grants policies and activities that impact the entire research community. A recently featured post details facts and figures about applications and awards in FY 2012 as compared to FY 2011. The overall success rate for research project grants (RPGs) stayed the same at 18 percent; however, FY 2012 saw slight increases in the average size of awards and the total funding for RPGs.
ASH Bridge Grant: Applications Available in February, Deadline April 5In an attempt to offset recent NIH funding cuts, ASH will assist unfunded R01 grant applicants through one-year, $100,000 awards designed to help sustain the recipient's research. This year and for the next two years, ASH's new bridge grant program will provide at least 30 one-year awards annually. ASH members who applied for an NIH R01 grant or equivalent but were denied funding due to budget cutbacks are eligible to apply. Applications for the second round of awards will be available in February, and they will be due April 5, 2013. Learn more about the ASH Bridge Grant Program.
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