Fauci Details NIH Plans for FY 2003 Bioterrorism Spending
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, on Sunday offered the "first detailed view" of the NIH's plan to spend the $1.7 billion in anti-bioterrorism funding in President Bush's fiscal year 2003 budget proposal, the Wall Street Journal reports. Fauci said that nearly $600 million would be set aside for drug and vaccine development for anthrax, smallpox and other infections that could result from a bioterrorist attack. He said that the agency would also direct funds for "basic research on microbes, scientific studies of human immune defenses and new laboratories to study the most deadly [biological] agents," such as Ebola. Pointing out that only five people died during the anthrax attacks last fall while infectious diseases such as influenza and AIDS claim the lives of "tens of thousands" of people annually, Fauci said that it is "critical to spend the funds on research that would have wider use in battling infection." He added, "Bioterror agents are just another emerging, or re-emerging, disease" (Wall Street Journal, 2/19). Detailed information on the NIH portion of Bush's budget proposal is available at http://www.nih.gov/news/budgetfy2003/2003NIHpresbudget.pdf. Note: You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the information.This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.