The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is authorized by Congress to support the following mission:
NIH is the steward of medical and behavioral research for the Nation. Its mission is science in pursuit of fundamental knowledge about the nature and behavior of living systems and the application of that knowledge to extend healthy life and reduce the burdens of illness and disability.
Congress provides funding for NIH which is distributed to institutions and researchers to achieve this goal.
Periodically, Congress reviews and modifies the legislation which guides NIH, a process called “re-authorization”. Congress reauthorized NIH in 1993. Congressman Joe Barton (R-TX), chair of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, has made NIH reauthorization a priority since becoming chair in 2004.
Since then, Chairman Barton’s staff has worked with stakeholder groups to define legislation that will reform NIH while continuing to support research.
House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Joe Barton (R-TX) is bringing an updated version of a bill to reauthorize the National Institutes of Health (NIH) before his Committee for a vote …
Overall, the draft bill focuses on the organization and function of the Office of the Director of NIH and its relationship to the individual NIH institutes and centers by providing enhanced authorities for strategic planning and support of trans-institute initiatives. The bill would standardize a detailed series of reporting requirements covering research and other activities supported by NIH to promote greater accountability and increased transparency of NIH funds.